BREMERTON, Wash. — Ferry riders got a final chance to voice their concerns about proposed fare increases in the last of four public hearings Wednesday night.
The proposed hike would increase walk-on passengers fares by 1 percent and 2.5 percent for vehicles.
Depending on what route someone takes, that could be a dime a ride or more.
With a front-row seat to the Puget Sound, a ferry commute from Bremerton to Seattle is one Dorian Eldridge has preferred for the past 20 years.
“I’m very blessed to be able to cross the Sound every day in this manner,” said Eldridge. “I enjoy it much better than being on I-5, I-405, 520.”
But it’s also a trip that’s costing her more and more each year at an estimated $150 a month.
With a proposed the proposed hikes, which would take effect in October and then again in May 2016, Eldridge said the costs will add up.
“They get you one way or another; you either have to cross the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and, of course, they are hiking that up, and then the pay hike on the ferry, so to get off the peninsula (it costs) unless you drive to Olympia.”
She isn’t the only one concerned; so is commuter Channing Hammons.
“I think that’s ridiculous. We pay enough already. We don’t need to pay anymore," said Hammons.
Hammons attended the last of four public meetings the Washington State Transportation Commission held to hear concerns.
Officials say the fare increases are needed to meet the state’s new transportation budget.
The commission is expected to make a decision in the next two weeks.