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Joseph Lhota, the M.T.A. chairman, will step down on Friday and is expected run for mayor as a Republican. A law prevents him from entering the race while holding the chairmanship. He's received widespread praise for his response to Superstorm Sandy. But the agency will adopt its new budget on Wednesday, and is expected to vote on approving a slate of fare and toll increases. It is likely he'd face primary challengers as well.
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M.T.A. Chairman Joseph Lhaota said yesterday that the base fare ride for subways and buses would likely rise when then agency votes on a fare hike plan in December. The move affects the least amount of riders, since only 15 percent buy MetroCards under $10, which don't receive bonuses. But those are also often the poorest riders. Lhota also said he'd lobby for more money from the state, which contributes less to mass transit than others with large cities.
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The M.T.A. revealed its four fare hike proposals today. Two would increase the base fare to $2.50 from $2.25 while raising the cost of unlimited MetroCards. The others wouldn't alter the base fare but would increase unlimiteds substantially. Chairman Joseph Lhota said he prefers a hybrid of the proposals. He also ruled out eliminating the bonus for pay-per-ride cards, which makes two of the proposals unlikely to pass. Costs for commuter trains, as well as bridge and tunnel crossings, will also rise. The MTA is looking for another $450 million a year from users. Fares and tolls are expected to rise again in 2015. They vote on the proposals in December.
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