By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – The agency that operates public transportation in Los Angeles County is continuing efforts to explore the possibility of eliminating fares entirely on its trains and buses.

The L.A. County Metropolitan Transportation Authority Wednesday is kicking off the first of five community meetings to discuss a pilot program that would eliminate fares for low-income riders.

Metro’s Fareless System Initiative, an exploratory task force, has proposed an 18-month pilot program which would provide free rides to low-income riders starting in January 2022, and free rides to K-12 students beginning in August of 2022.

The pilot program would run through June of 2023.

The Fareless System Initiative’s first virtual meeting was scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at the San Fernando Valley Service Council.

The Fareless System Initiative launched last September. According to an agency survey released last summer, the median household income of Metro bus riders is $17,975, and $27,723 for Metro rail riders.

Another four meetings are slated to take place over the next several weeks:

San Gabriel Valley Service Council, on Monday, March 8th at 5 p.m.
Westside/Central Service Council, on Wednesday, March 10th at 6 p.m.
Gateway Cities Service Council, on Thursday, March 11th at 2 p.m.
South Bay Service Council, on Friday, March 12th at 9:30 a.m.

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