The Chairman and President of the Chicago Transit Authority today recommended that the Chicago Transit Board cancel planned service cuts, fare increases, and layoffs for 2005.
The move comes after the Regional Transportation Authority voted today to allocate $54.3 million in state aid solely to the CTA.
The Illinois State Legislature provided the RTA with the extra funds last month as a result of the pending CTA cuts.
Pace suburban bus service had previously requested up to 20% of the aid for their paratransit service. The RTA instead agreed to provide Pace with $7.8 million from its discretionary funds.
The CTA first threatened service cuts and fare increases late last year in order to plug a $55 million budget deficit. The CTA Board then voted in December 2004 to postpone any cuts or fare changes until July of this year in hopes the State would provide extra funds during the spring legislative session.
While the State did respond to this request, their action was merely a band-aid and not a permanent solution for the problems in the current formula that provides funding to the CTA, Pace, and Metra.
In 2006, the CTA may face a budget deficit of up to $100 million. Without a change in the funding formula, CTA riders will once again face the possibility of service cuts and fare increases next year.
ChicagoBus.org urges its visitors to support a change in the mass transit funding formula. To learn more about the problems with the current formula, visit “keepchicagolandmoving.com”:http://www.keepchicagolandmoving.com/ (CTA-sponsored site) or “savechicagotransit.com”:http://www.savechicagotransit.com/ (independent site). We also recommend our visitors visit “Ask Carole”:http://ctachair.blogspot.com/, the blog of CTA chairwoman Carol Brown.