SBS bus at night with blue light (and lens flare)

MTA reassigns fare enforcement teams

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (NY) is reassigning its Eagle Teams.

The retired police officers were assigned to ride MTA local buses in search of fare scofflaws.  But the approach was not successful and the authority is making changes. “It has been determined that this effort, which relied on intermittent fare evasion enforcement, did not result in significant or lasting reductions in fare evasion,” according to a MTA financial document.

The MTA first deployed the Eagle Teams in 2012 to fight fare evasion on local buses; assignments were based on a statistical identification of “problem” routes.

But now, the MTA is reassigning the teams from local buses to the 12 Select Bus Service routes, a bus rapid transit service, where riders pay at the bus stop before boarding. “Select Bus Service has been remarkably successful attracting more customers and improving bus speeds by up to 20%, and as a result we’re focusing our resources here,” MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz said in a statement. “As we continue to increase the number of SBS routes throughout the city, we are redeploying Eagle Team members to these routes to enforce off-board fare collection.” Link to full story in New York Daily News.

Photo credit: Susan Mara Bregman

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