PUC lets Casco Bay ferry fare changes stand

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PORTLAND — The Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday ruled that a May 2009 rate increase by Casco Bay Lines was reasonable and has rejected a petition demanding an investigation.

The budget passed in May 2009 by the CBL Board of Directors resulted in increases to tickets across the board. For example, an adult ticket during peak season increased between 95 cents and $1.05, and 35 cents to 45 cents in the off season. A 50-cent fuel surcharge was dropped from ticket prices in September 2009. Freight costs increased 8.6 percent.

The petition, signed by more than 300 island residents, claimed CBL misreported costs and poorly budgeted.

Despite declining to formally investigate the ticket increases, the PUC did suggest Casco Bay Lines work on improving ticketing and recording revenues. The commission previously required the ferry line to better define dimensions and weight requirements for freight rates.