By Jim Melwert

By Jim Melwert

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – SEPTA’s fare increases and new “smart-card” system is set to go into effect later this year, and the transit agency is holding several public hearings on the changes this week.

The fare hikes are scheduled to take effect July 1st, and the smart-card technology — an electronic fare collection system — is to roll out this fall.

READ: SEPTA Announces New Fare Structure

That new system will have riders tap a card on an electronic reader, either a SEPTA-issued card or any bank cards that have the contactless technology.

The cards will replace tokens and transfers on buses, subways and trolleys, and also will replace tickets and passes on regional rail lines.

Among the rate hikes, A token will go up to $1.80 on July 1st, from the current $1.55, but tokens would be eliminated when the smart-card system is fully implemented on bus, subway, and trolley lines by next year.

Some regional rail zones are changing, and rail pass prices are going up.

The first of the public hearings are Monday at the Delaware County Courthouse in Media, Pa. at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.

On Tuesday, a hearing will be held in Norristown at the Montgomery County Human Services Center. Wednesday is the Philadlephia hearing at SEPTA’s Center City building at 1234 Market Street. All of those will be at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Friday, there will be a meeting in West Chester, Pa. and next Monday, one will be held in Doylestown, Pa.

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