HOLLYWOOD—On Tuesday, June 8, the LA City council tentatively approved fare increases and route eliminations on the DASH and Commuter Express in an effort to fight the city’s enormous deficit.

The increase would go into effect July 1, with a subsequent increase to be enacted in the summer of next year. The DASH and Commuter Express buses are a popular source of public transportation that serve the greater Los Angeles area with lines that run through Hollywood, Los Feliz, Studio City, Pacific Palisades and other popular destinations throughout the city.

On May 27, the council put forward the measure with recommendations to increase prices and cut certain routes. The vote passed 10-0 the following week and on Tuesday the ordinance was up for final approval.  Though the council again voted 10-0 in favor of the measures, 12 votes are required for approval so there will be a second vote next week to decide the issue.

Though the fare increase and proposed route cuts will be an inconvenience, the city must seek ways to tackle the economic crisis.  When the measure was put forward, the Budget and Finance and the Transportation Committees issued a report that outlined the city’s problem: “The cumulative deficit is expected to grow to $350 million in the next decade. The LADOT is, therefore, recommending that the City take immediate action to address this projected shortfall. Although LADOT advises that a rate increase alone will not solve the depth of the program’s deficit problem, it does recommend approving the DASH fare increases.”

Next week will be the final vote and as unanimity seems to be the trend for city council voting on this issue, residents of Los Angeles (most notably those who make use of our public transportation) should ready themselves for fare increases and route eliminations on both the DASH and the Commuter Express.