The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority is looking to raise transit fares for the first time since 2013

The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority is proposing its first fare hike since 2013.

The Philadelphia-area transit agency announced Friday a "modest" fare hike proposal for the 2018 fiscal year, saying the increases are needed to help fund its operating budget. If approved, basic fares would jump 25 cents from $2.25 to $2.50 and monthly regional passes would rise as much as $13.

SEPTA has implemented period fare adjustments during the last decades with increases in 2007, 2010 and 2013. The previously scheduled 2016 hike was postponed due to a rollout of a new SEPTA Key Card program, a reloadable fare card for transit services..

SEPTA has scheduled public hearings on the proposed fare increases starting April 19. If approved, the new rates would go into effect on July 1.

SEPTA bonds are rated A1 by Moody's Investors Service and AA by Fitch Ratings. It is the primary transit provider for the Philadelphia region and the sixth-largest transportation agency in the nation.

The agency faced a six-day transit strike last fall after its contract with the Transportation Workers Union Local 234 expired on Oct. 31. Despite losing revenue for nearly a week, Moody's noted in a November report that bondholders only had a "remote" risks from the work stoppage because SEPA bonds are structured to insulate investors from SEPTA's finances or operations.

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