Saying that an increase in diesel prices has created some strains, officials at Ben Franklin Transit are considering some rate increases, as well as cutting what are called college passes.

Rising fuel prices have prompted officials to seek cost cutting measures.  According to BFT, customers and residents who were asked said they would prefer to pay more for services than to have routes or  service cut back.   If approved, overall rates would rise about 20%.  BFT is also considering raising the age limit for free rides for elderly passengers on fixed routes from 60 to 65.    College passes would be eliminated.

  But CBC students can still get passes through CBC, as the school pays BFT for free passes to be used by students.  They have a sticker attatched to their ID card, so the effects of that possible elimination would be minimized.  BFT hopes to create a similar program with WSU Tri-Cities.  Public hearings will be held March 15th at the 3 Rivers Transit Center for public comments and input on the possible changes.