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Metro Considers Unprecedented Cuts, Fare Hikes

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By David Schultz

No more eight-car trains. Rail service ending at midnight on weekends. The elimination of more than a dozen bus lines. And a 35-cent across the board fare hike.

The Metro Board will consider all of these measures as it tries to balance its budget.

These are just proposals that will be taken up later this year. But Board Member Jim Graham, a D.C. Councilman, says even considering them is too extreme.

"I have a number of concerns about this," says Graham, "But first and foremost is the uproar that this is going to cause."

Chris Zimmerman, a member of the Metro Board and the Arlington County Board, acknowledges the cuts and fare hikes will be controversial. But he says the public should at least be allowed to weigh in on them.

"We should put everything on the table, understanding that will get people upset about a lot of things," says Zimmerman. "They should be upset."

Public hearings on the proposed budget start later this month and go on through the spring.

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