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North Ferry rate hike expected by July 7

The Suffolk County Legislature on June 29 unanimously approved a rate hike request from North Ferry by a vote of 18-0. The bill was sent to County Executive Steve Bellone for his signature. Mr. Bellone has 15 days to sign the legislation or reject it, Supervisor Gerry Siller announced at Tuesday’s Town Board work session. If he takes no action, the new rates would go into effect on July 7, the supervisor said.

The details of raises were made public in the past three months and include increases to residents and those who work on the Island. The number of those who pay discounted fees for ferry fares has been substantially higher since the pandemic struck, while full fare vehicles decreased in numbers as more people stayed on the Island and fewer trucks boarded ferries, according to information provided by North Ferry General Manager Bridg Hunt.

At the request of some residents, Mr. Hunt worked to identify organizations on the Island that can assist those for whom the increase represents an economic hardship.

North Ferry has decided to give an annual endowment for a specific amount of money to three Shelter Island-based charities that will distribute tickets to those in need.

A full story on the changes will appear online and in next week’s Reporter.