Audit: LIRR losing millions of dollars due to haphazard fare collection efforts

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The LIRR could be losing tens of millions of dollars in revenue because of the way fares are being collected.

An audit by the state Comptroller's Office found the LIRR may be losing more than $33 million a year because of haphazard fare collection efforts on trains.

The audit looked at how fares were collected on 68 different trips on the LIRR from December 2018 through May 2019.

According to the state Comptroller's Office, it found tickets were incorrectly collected about one-third of the time.

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said the resulting loss of $33.4 million in revenue ultimately hurts commuters.

"Riders are counting on the MTA to find the billions needed to upgrade and maintain service. It can start by making sure it's doing everything it can to collect fares properly, not just in the subway, but on commuter rail lines, too," said DiNapoli.

An LIRR spokesperson issued a statement saying in part, "The LIRR has taken a leading role in developing and implementing an ambitious fare collection strategy that has yielded measurable improvements, including a decline in the fare not collected rate of 1.5 percentage points in the past year."

Most commuters News 12 spoke with say failure to collect fares usually happens when trains are packed.

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