GREENSTEIN/DeANGELO: ALL-ABOARD NJTRANSIT’S ONE-WAY TRIP TO ENORMOUS FEES FOR RIDERS

Lawmakers Outraged by NJ Transit Plan to Raise Parking Fees While the Agency Also Plans to Privatize Parking that will Further Explode Commuter Costs

(HAMILTON TWP.) — Following today’s news reports about NJ Transit’s proposal to increase parking fees at up to 140 transit parking lots across the state, Senator Linda R. Greenstein and Assemblyman Wayne P. DeAngelo expressed outrage that commuters are going to be asked once again to spend more money to use mass transit.

According to news reports, fees for commuters parking at transit stops may increase by as much as $40 per month — an increase of almost $500 per year. Commuters already are paying more for transit fares as a result of large increases put in place by NJ Transit during the spring of 2010.

“Nearly every aspect of mass transit commuting is becoming more expensive for middle-class riders to get to and from work or travel around our state. Commuters simply can not afford more fee increases whether it’s to pay for a seat on a train or park their car at the bus stop,” said Greenstein (D-Plainsboro).

“New Jersey commuters continue to be nickel and dimed and ‘dollared’ to the point where mass transit is no longer a financially feasible means of transportation. At almost $500 more per year, NJ Transit’s proposed parking fee increase is essentially another way to tax commuters solely for trying to get to work every day. The average middle-class household budget simply cannot absorb hundreds of dollars in increased transit fees,” said DeAngelo (D-Hamilton).

Since April, Greenstein and DeAngelo have raised significant doubts about on-going plans by NJ Transit to privatize parking facilities at transit stops since other similar efforts resulted in significantly increased fees for commuters.

“Earlier this year, transit fares rose significantly. Over the last few months, NJ Transit has stayed on track to privatizing parking lots that will increase costs to motorists without openly discussing the plan with the public. Now, NJ Transit is considering raising parking fees. When will the financial assault on mass transit commuters stop?” asked Greenstein.

“It’s just not acceptable that thousands of our constituents and hundreds of thousands of commuters across the state will be asked to dig further into their pockets to pay sky-rocketing NJ Transit fares,” said DeAngelo.

Greenstein and DeAngelo’s 14th Legislative District is home to two train stations on NJ Transit’s Northeast Corridor — Hamilton and Princeton Junction — as well as several Park ‘n Ride locations throughout the district.