EVERETT — A low-income bus fare of $1.50 for Everett Transit was approved by city councilmembers last week.
It will go into effect July 1, the same time the transit agency is increasing fares across all categories. Starting this summer, a bus ride will cost adult riders $2, youth and low-income $1.50, and senior and disabled $0.50. Fares have doubled in price since last year.
Everett Transit presented three low-income options to the council: $1, $1.50 or none.
The new fare matches the King County Metro and Sound Transit low-income price. Kitsap County’s low-income fare is $1 and Community Transit recently adopted one of $1.25 for local buses and $2 for commuter routes. It also will kick in July 1.
A survey found nearly 50 percent of respondents supported a $1.50 low-income fare, according to Tom Hingson, director of transportation for Everett Transit.
People who don’t ride the bus were more likely to favor a $1 low-income fare, while frequent riders generally preferred $1.50, Hingson told councilmembers before the vote.
About 50 percent of existing adult riders who pay full price could qualify for the reduced fare, he estimated.
Everett Transit will join the ORCA LIFT program to implement the new fare. To qualify, riders have to earn less than $24,280 for individuals and $50,200 for a family of four. The income levels are based on 200 percent of the federal poverty level for 2019.
The transit agency is working on the enrollment process. More details are expected closer to July.