Legislators seek to block Metro-North fare hike

State Reps. Pam Staneski, R-119, and Charles Ferraro, R-117, along with other regional legislators, are starting a petition drive to stop a proposed 5 percent Metro-North rail fare hike.

The legislators’ “No Fare Increase” Metro-North petition asks that the hike that would hit all parts of the Metro-North New Haven rail line be halted and other savings be found in the state budget.

One example of savings, would be to eliminate the admissions tax exemptions for venues including the XL Center, Webster Bank Arena and Harbor Yard, which would equal the same amount projected to be raised from the fare increase.

Staneski and Ferraro plan to board Metro-North stations to collect petition signatures from area train commuters. The petitions will be presented by the legislators to the state Department of Transportation at fare increase public hearings in New Haven and Stamford. The public can fill out the online petition at www.nofareincrease.com.

Ferraro’s district includes Orange, Milford and West Haven; Staneski’s includes Mliford and Orange.

Hearings will be held in Stamford: 4-9 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14, UCONN Stamford Campus Auditorium, One University Place. In New Haven: 4-9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 15, New Haven Hall of Records, Room G-2, 200 Orange St.