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Petition circulated to stop planned rail fare increases

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HARTFORD — A Wilton state representative is circulating a petition with the aim of stopping a proposed five percent fare increase on Connecticut’s commuter rail lines.

Republican Gail Lavielle contends commuters are not seeing transit service improvements in return for the increase proposed by the Department of Transportation. It is scheduled to take effect Dec. 1.

The increase would affect the Metro North New Haven commuter rail line, including the New Canaan, Danbury and Waterbury branches, as well as Shore Line East. It’s expected to generate $5.9 million to help cover budget cuts.

DOT is holding public hearings on the proposal later this month in Hartford, Meriden, Waterbury, Stamford and New Haven.

Lavielle and her colleagues will ride the rails in the coming days to collect signatures.