BOSTON (WHDH/AP) — Massachusetts Gov. Charles D. Baker is proposing to change how the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority handles fare evaders.
The Republican governor wants to reduce fines for anyone who boards, or tries to board, a bus or train without paying.
If approved by lawmakers, the new fines could start at $10 and increase to $250. Fines currently start at $100 and increase to $600 for repeat offenders.
Transit police issued 2,300 fare evasion citations in 2018.
The current punishment for fare evasion is a noncriminal citation, but riders stopped for not paying can be arrested if they refuse to show personal identification.
Under the proposals included in a supplement budget plan, Baker also wants to make it illegal to arrest riders for fare evasion.
Baker released a $44.6 billion state budget proposal in January. Overall, Baker’s budget includes an increase of $135 million in operating funds for the MBTA for a total of nearly $1.4 billion.
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