Earlier estimates projected the gap would total approximately $185 million for FY13. The MBTA has taken aggressive steps to reduce that deficit: reducing energy purchase costs, planned introduction of single person train operation on the Red Line, encouraging MBTA employees to enroll in more affordable health insurance plans and other operating and administrative efficiencies. However, growing debt service costs associated with capital projects, significant increases in maintenance costs for an aging fleet and higher costs for the RIDE mean additional solutions are necessary.
The proposed fare increases and service reductions released today are aimed at closing the FY13 deficit.
"While the MBTA continues to identify and adopt strict measures to close the budget gap, less costly ways of doing business and additional revenue-generating measures are necessary," said MassDOT Transportation Secretary and CEO Richard Davey. "I am confident with the public’s involvement in this process we can review the study, propose recommendations, and together generate new revenue to continue the progress the MBTA has made in serving its customers.”
In order to fully engage transit users in the process, the MBTA will host more than 20 public hearings over the next several months. A final fare increase and service reduction recommendation will be made to the MBTA’s Board of Directors this Spring and changes will be implemented on July 1, 2012.
In addition to rising operating costs, annual revenues continue to be insufficient to fund the system. Sales tax revenue allocated to the MBTA has increased by only 0.08% annually since fiscal year 2001, resulting in growing budget gaps since the original projections were made with the expectation of forward funding. While the MBTA was a beneficiary of the 2009 sales tax increase, the annual growth in sales tax revenues is not enough to address continuing increases in the cost of service on all modes.
“With MBTA ridership at record levels, the demand for the services we deliver is unquestionable,” said Acting MBTA General Manager Jonathan Davis. “I look forward to an open and transparent public process that will lead to recommendations on how we can continue to satisfy demand while addressing the T’s financial crisis.”
As only one of two transit properties in North America that has not raised fares over the last five years, the MBTA has worked hard to identify ways to save money and reduce costs, while improving customer service. From investments in accessibility improvements to use of modern technology to improved transparency, the MBTA is committed to responding to the needs of its customers.
The Fare Increase and Service Reductions Study is available at www.mbta.com.
The MBTA’s public outreach process begins immediately with the acceptance of public comment through March 1, 2012 electronically at mbta.com, by email at email@example.com, via mail to MBTA, Ten Park Plaza, Boston, Ma 02116, Attention: Fare Proposal Committee, and by phone at 617-222-3200/ TTY (617) 222-5146. 20 Public meetings including one hearing will be held beginning January 17 through March 6. A complete list of meetings times and locations is now available at www.mbta.com/jointhediscussion.
MBTA Green Line First Countdown Signs Live in Newton posted on Apr 25
Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack announced that the MBTA Green Line’s first countdown signs have been activated at Newton Centre and Newton Highlands Stations on the D branch. “These signs provide customers with additional information that they haven’t had before, making customers’ commutes more predictable,” said Secretary …Continue Reading MBTA Green Line First Countdown Signs Live in Newton
Massachusetts Walk and Bike to School Day: May 6th posted on Apr 23
The day is approaching quickly! On Wednesday, May 6th, thousands of elementary and middle school students will participate in hundreds of events within Massachusetts communities as they walk and bike to school. Massachusetts Walk and Bike to School Day is a statewide event through the …Continue Reading Massachusetts Walk and Bike to School Day: May 6th
MBTA Customer Appreciation Day: Friday, April 24 posted on Apr 21
The MBTA on Customer Appreciation Day, Friday, April 24th, will offer FREE service all day and is also now offering 15 percent discounts on weekly and monthly passes in May to show appreciation for customers choosing to take the T. A total of 16 MBTA …Continue Reading MBTA Customer Appreciation Day: Friday, April 24