Audit finds senior free-ride transit card misuse

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A soon-to-be released audit by the Regional Transportation Authority found fraud and abuse in a program providing free rides to seniors.

CHICAGO (AP) — A soon-to-be released audit by the Regional Transportation Authority found fraud and abuse in a program providing free rides to seniors. Chicago’s WFLD-TV reports the audit found many cases of free senior ride passes used after the registered user died. RTA spokeswoman Diane Palmer says approximately 160 of about 3,000 cards belonging to deceased passengers were still in use. The report by WFLD and the Better Government Association says the audit found evidence the cards have been sold. Palmer calls the misuse a "travesty" and says the RTA is addressing the problem. Transit agencies have said the free rides add to financial troubles. In 2008, former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich insisted on the free rides in exchange for signing a sales tax increase to bail out transit agencies. Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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