To help the city's senior citizens afford bus fares, the Bell City Council has agreed to pay the difference between the old and new fares the Southern California Rapid Transit District began charging July 1. Senior citizen bus passes jumped from $4 to $7 a month. Council members decided to subsidize the difference between the two fares with money from Proposition A, the half-cent transit sales tax initiative approved by county voters 4 1/2 years ago. (Based on their populations, all 83 cities in the county receive a share annually of the transit tax money.)

Any Bell resident 62 or older can purchase the specially-priced passes at City Hall, 6330 Pine Ave. Passes for August will be on sale between July 25 and Aug. 10. Senior citizens can also pick up at City Hall a special picture identification card free of charge. Photos will be taken between 1 and 3 p.m. on Friday.

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