1. Some CharlieCards expired yesterday. A UniversalHub poster, "Adamg," mentioned running into trouble at the Davis Square station when the system deemed his CharlieCard expired and wouldn't let him onto the train. The cards don't last forever; the MBTA's web site explains that "General public CharlieCards have 5 to 10 year expirations," but that "the MBTA will update general public cards that are still being used to extend the expiration date another two years."
On the expirations yesterday, MBTA spokesman Joe Pesaturo said, "A limited number of cards were affected for a short period of time. The problem has been corrected." He added, "Any customer who experienced difficulty yesterday can have the problem corrected quickly today by tapping his/her CharlieCard on any fare vending or fare collection equipment."
2. Fare hikes are a distinct possibility. Transportation Secretary Richard Davey explained to CBS Boston that he believes a fare increase is nearly unavoidable given the $161 million deficit looming at the beginning of the upcoming fiscal year, in July, and the Boston Globe is reporting that he says "lots of hearings" are expected to "listen to customers" concerning the fare hikes and other proposals.
3. Overall crime numbers are down at the Community College stop, but going up in Sullivan Square. The MBTA's Crimestats tells us that from January 1st to the 30th of November, 2011, at Community College there was one incident of vandalism, one of robbery, one of "other larceny," and one of assault. That's 4 crimes in total, compared to last year's count of 8, including 2 bicycle thefts and a sexual assault. Sullivan Square racked up 36 crimes this January-to-November period, 11 more than in the same amount of time in 2010, but there's a notable difference this year: 8 of the additional crimes are robberies, and 2 more are sexual offenses.
Patch gave folks a chance to a couple weeks ago, and the comments sections in that article and this one are definitely open for business. Are these trains headed in the right direction or going off the rails?