CTA President Richard Rodriguez kicked off the annual CTA budget discussion on Wednesday by announcing $36.1 million cuts from "personnel efficiencies" and another $17.5 million in fuel and administrative costs. The $54 million budget whack was the first salvo in what promises to be another "interesting" adventure as the CTA struggles to balance its budget.
The personnel cuts come from eliminating 70 positions - including a dozen management jobs, delaying some hiring, tightly managing overtime costs, and continuing to require non-union workers to take unpaid days off, with no pay increase in 2011.
No further cuts in union bus or rail operator jobs were mentioned. About 1,000 operator jobs were cut in February after the CTA sliced bus service by almost 20 percent and rail service by about 10%.
The CTA promised the state it would not raise fares this year or next. But the state is owes the CTA about $136 million in public subsidies.