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D.C. Council: No more free rides on Circulator | The Washington Post

Enjoy those free Circulator rides while you can.

The D.C. Council on Tuesday cut Mayor Muriel E. Bowser’s request for $3.1 million from the fiscal 2020 budget, killing the mayor’s plan to keep Circulator rides free indefinitely.

While the free-ride funding was eliminated from the $15.5 billion spending plan, the budget does include money for a scooter parking program and a congestion-pricing study. It also increases residential parking fees. The budget, for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1, will get a second, and final, vote on May 28.

Bowser Chief of Staff John Falcicchio said the mayor hopes the council will reconsider the Circulator fare decision before the second vote.

Other transportation-related items in the council’s $15.5 billion spending plan include $115,000 for a dockless-scooter parking program aimed at improving access and use of public space, and nearly $500,000 to study the District’s options for implementing congestion pricing.

Congestion pricing, charging motorists a fee to enter congested areas, is gaining momentum in U.S. cities. New York recently approved congestion pricing for drivers entering the central business district of Manhattan, beginning in 2021. The money would be used to fix the city’s ailing subway. Several other cities, including San Francisco and Seattle, also are considering congestion pricing as a way to alleviate gridlock, take cars off the roads and encourage transit use.

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D.C. Council: No more free rides on Circulator – The Washington Post.

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