OAKLAND (KPIX 5) – Bay Area Rapid Transit is ramping up its campaign against fare evasion, approving a requirement for riders to show proof of payment.

The BART Board of Directors unanimously approved the proposals during Thursday night’s meeting.

Starting in January, riders must present a Clipper card or a valid paper ticket when asked by an officer in the paid areas of stations and on trains.

Adults who are caught without the proper fare would face a $75 fine for a first offense, while minors would be fined $55.

Repeat offenders who are adults would receive criminal citations if they are caught three times in a 12 month period. Minors and low-income adults who are cited would have the option to perform community service instead.

BART spokesperson Jim Allison said fare evasion costs the transit agency $15 million to $25 million a year.

The transit agency said nearly 75 percent of BART’s operating costs come from people who follow the rules and pay the full fare.

Officials anticipate the new rules will bring back $8 million to $11 million each year.

“It’s not about catching every person who fare evades. It is about reducing the fare evasion and also sending the message that the free ride is over,” Allison told KPIX 5.

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