Post Content

JAloisi_1154 Crop

Posted by:
Secretary James Aloisi, Executive Office of Transportation

As you read or hear about possible financial scenarios and options for closing the MBTA's $160 million budget deficit, it is important to remember that no decisions have been made about service reductions or fare increases. 

The T staff brought forward to the board at a public meeting one month ago a budget for the fiscal year beginning in July 2009 that includes the projected deficit and shows the T's extraordinarily difficult budget circumstance.  Just one example is the cost of the principal and interest payments as the bills come due on $5.2 billion in Big Dig-related debt.  Those debt payments next year will increase by $77 million, and debt payments overall consume 30% of T revenues. 

Despite this daunting financial challenge, as Chairman of the MBTA board and your Transportation Secretary I am committed to reviewing every available option to cut costs and close the gap. Right now the MBTA is busy analyzing a full range of options that may or may not include service cuts. But it is too early to tell since no formal set of options has been presented to me.

At the same time, Governor Patrick 's Transportation and Economic Security Plan calls for fundamental reforms in transportation and in pension benefits, including ending the "23 and out" retirement benefit at the T. The House and Senate have passed reform bills and will soon meet to hammer out the differences.  The Governor has also said that only after comprehensive and meaningful reforms are in place should we consider using additional gas tax revenues to avoid service reductions and fare increases at the T. 

As these ideas are considered in the coming weeks and months, I want to assure T riders that any decisions about services and fares will be made only after a complete and transparent public review process. Whether they are using the T to get to work, school or to a doctor’s appointment millions of our state’s residents depend on the T as a critical transportation service. I am committed to ensuring that the MBTA undertakes a robust civic engagement process before any decisions are reached. 

Written By:

Recent Posts

New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge Public Meeting Set posted on Jan 29

New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge Public Meeting Set

MassDOT is conducting a study of the New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge Corridor, a bridge that spans New Bedford Harbor. The swing bridge connecting the communities of New Bedford and Fairhaven is functionally obsolete, constrains marine traffic, and its opening results in extensive vehicle delays. This study   …Continue Reading New Bedford-Fairhaven Bridge Public Meeting Set

Winter Storm Update: Travel Ban Lifted, MBTA Open posted on Jan 28

Winter Storm Update: Travel Ban Lifted, MBTA Open

The statewide travel ban has been lifted as of midnight.  Motorists, especially those in the City of Boston and Eastern counties, are asked to use caution as MassDOT crews continue to plow and clear state roadways and ramps. Parking bans are still in effect in   …Continue Reading Winter Storm Update: Travel Ban Lifted, MBTA Open

Winter Storm Update: Statewide Travel Ban, MBTA Closed Tuesday, January 27 posted on Jan 26

Winter Storm Update: Statewide Travel Ban, MBTA Closed Tuesday, January 27

Governor Charlie Baker has signed an Executive Order allowing for the enforcement of a statewide travel ban effective at midnight, Monday, January 26. The following exceptions shall exist for the ban and all drivers are encouraged to remain safe and use their best judgment:     …Continue Reading Winter Storm Update: Statewide Travel Ban, MBTA Closed Tuesday, January 27