The Sound Transit Board of Directors will consider joining Metro’s low-income fare program on Thursday, November 20. The proposed fare would match the youth fare, but might only be implemented on some services, if at all.
The service combinations under consideration for the low-income fare are:
Option 1. None
Option 2. Link only
Option 3. Link and ST Express intra-county
Option 4. Link, all ST Express, and Sounder
For each service adopting the low-income fare, the proposal calls for raising the other fares on that service by 25 cents across the board, except for the free categories (children 0-5, Access riders with a current monthly Access pass, and uniformed law enforcement).
The low-income fare would be the same as the raised youth fare (for ages 6-18): $1.50 on Link and ST Express 1-county, $2.75 on ST Express multi-county, and $2.25-$4.00 on Sounder. The low-income fare would require using loaded ORCA product, while the youth fare would merely require ID with age. Children ages 0-5 would continue to ride free with an adult, up to four per adult.
The resulting regular adult fares would be $2.25-$3.00 on Link, $2.75 on ST Express 1-county, $3.75 on ST Express multi-county, and $3.00-$5.50 on Sounder.
Fares for Regional Reduced Fare Permit holders (for seniors 65 and older and riders with qualifying disabilities) would be $1.00 on Link and ST Express 1-county, $1.75 on ST Express multi-county, and $1.50-$2.75 on Sounder.
Any approved fare changes would take effect on March 1, 2015, to coincide with King County Metro’s fare changes. Public Health – Seattle and King County, and other agencies, are expected to start issuing the low-income ORCA card in February 2015. To be eligible, you have to be at 200% or less of the federal poverty level.