Here's a wrapup of some CTA news stories.
Hearing set for Monday on Ventra fare system. The $3 price of a single-use rail fare card no doubt will be a hot topic of conversation at Monday's public hearing on the new CTA's Ventra fare-payment system. Riders who don't have a Ventra card or contactless debit/credit card would purchase a single-use fare card for $3 - $2.25 for the base rail fare, 25 cents for a transfer (whether needed or not), and a 50-cent "limited-use media fare." Riders would still be able to use cash to pay for the $2 bus fare. A CTA spokesperson said only about 4 percent of rider buy single-use tickets. No doubt even fewer will in the future. The hearing will begin at 6 p.m. Monday at CTA headquarters, 567 W. Lake St.
200 new jobs AND cleaner buses and rail cars. The CTA announced last week it will expand its ex-offender apprentice program - quadrupling the current number of apprentice opportunities on bus and rail to as many as 265. The non-violent ex-offenders earn $9.50 an hour for duties that will include platform servicing, bus and rail yard sweeping, rail car shop cleaning and general interior cleaning and detailed exterior cleaning of buses and trains.
Free rides for green beer next weekend. Miller Lite again will sponsor a free shuttle on two routes next weekend for St. Patrick's Day revelers. The free shuttle service will be available downtown on Saturday, March 16, from 9 a.m. until midnight and Sunday, March 17, from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Shuttles will run on two routes, making stops in the Loop, River North, Old Town, Lincoln Park and Wrigleyville neighborhoods at popular bars and restaurants, as well as near high-traffic “El” stops, Ogilvie Transportation Center and Union Station. Check the website for details.
Sponsor my head shaving. There's still time to sponsor my head shaving for St. Baldrick's Day. I am trying to raise $1,000. Any amount helps. Give $10 - $25 - $50 - $100. Anything you give will help me reach my goal. I am part of a team of folks called Donna's Good Things. Donna was the daughter of my friend Sheila. Donna died of brain cancer at age 4. I want to keep her memory alive with donations in her name. Will you help? Sponsor me me!