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quick check on a county salary matrix from 2009. There are more than 50 transit operators earning over $100,000. That's outrageous! I understand that you are often constrained in your decisions because of the collective bargaining agreement. However, it seems there must be -- absolutely MUST BE -- more you can do to better manage the transit budget before you start increasing fares. Please reconsider this decision. Offer options. Consider the impact your action will have on Seattle businesses, workers, visitors. Thank you, Allison O'Brien 360. I'm glad this is happening! I suspect (based upon experience) that many non-regular riders avoid taking the bus into downtown because they are intimidated by the rules of when to pay and when not to pay. Not to mention how much to pay. My opinion has long been that if everyone pays when they enter, this aspect of confusion would go away. Next, how much to pay. How to determine if a rider is crossing a zone, etc. I'm curious if the Orca system is able to track that and charge accordingly. Personally, if Rapid Ride frequent buses (every 10 minutes) is extended to at least 8pm leaving downtown traveling outbound, I will definitely switch back to commuting by bus. I began driving after over a year of trying to be a bus commuter, but the bus connections after 7pm downtown were sketchy at best. Usually at least a 45 minute wait for a bus, and the last straw was a two hour wait for a #54. Metro seems really geared toward prime time commuters, and anyone else who commutes other hours is unable to depend on buses being anywhere near on time. I appreciate Metro and just wish it was more user-friendly for the hours that I work. 361. I would like to voice a comment for those of us in favor of seeing the Ride Free Area eliminated. I ride out of the Ride Free Area every day, and each of those days I see the Area being abused. Sometimes, people jump on a bus in the Ride Free just to cause a stir because they have nothing else better to do. Other times, people ride the bus for one or two stops out of laziness. In fact, I see this quite a bit with heavier set individuals who would rather waste my time asking for the lift to be operated than to walk two blocks to the next stop. Criticisms of the elimination of the Ride Free include concern over the added time it will take busses to get out of downtown due to everyone having to pay as they enter. If Metro really gets behind ORCA as the preferred method of payment, I don't foresee any increased delay in getting out of downtown as many of the things that currently slow busses won't be allowed to interrupt service (detailed above). Even if bus service out of downtown is slightly slower due to the increased payment times at stops, I welcome that cost to do away with the abuse of the Ride Free Area. I won't miss the Ride Free Area and I am glad to see it go. Thank you very much for making this smart move. -Brent 362. Yet another dumb idea by non-thinking bureaucrats. By eliminating the downtown free ride zone, exactly how much money is going to be saved. Will there be fewer buses? Likely not. Will there be fewer stops? Likely not. Will there be fewer hours paid to drivers? Possibly, but immaterial. Will there be less fuel cost? No, as each stop will likely be longer with small additional amounts of fuel being burned. Will there be changes to the number of trips people take in the area- e.g. at lunch time, bus to Westlake for lunch, go the other way and bus to ID for lunch; ability to run errands at lunch etc. When I was able to ride Metro, I had a monthly pass so it made no difference, but now I have to drive. If I had to do an errand at lunch, rather than taking the bus, I would now likely drive. Please use some common sense and re-think this proposal. 363. I approve of eliminating free zone; approve of pay-as-you-enter; disapprove of exit through the back door policy. I'm able bodied, but don't make me battle my way to the back door of the 358. This

Ride Free Area - Public Engagement Report  

King County Metro Transit Implementation plan for Ride Free Area elimination and transition to pay-on-entry