The CTA board is set to approve the 2010 budget at a 10 am meeting today, and thanks to sleight of hand by Gov. Quinn, the meeting and budget won’t be as big a downer as once thought. No big fare hikes, but still service cuts remain for now, and with those cuts come 1,100 layoffs. (See continuation for details on service cuts.)
The deal calls for the RTA to borrow $166 million over the next two years for CTA operating funds. The state would pay the interest of almost $16 million in 2010 and 2011. After that, the RTA is on the hook for the interest.
Gov. Quinn calls this a “comprehensive plan,” but I would call it a “I’m running for governor and didn’t raise fares” plan.
Meanwhile, the CTA is still looking to reduce service cuts as well. From the press release:
In addition to freezing CTA and paratransit fare increases for the next
two years, the State is also in conversations with CTA aimed at
decreasing the number of anticipated service reductions, ensuring that
riders will continue to have reliable public transportation options.
Protest scheduled before meeting. Answer Chicago is still planning a protest at 9 am today outside the CTA headquarters at Lake and Clinton. More info here.
Go here for details on planned service reduction. This includes the elimination of some express routes that have duplicate service. Ignore the notice of fare changes at the bottom. FAres will remain as they are now.
Go here for details on proposed span of service reductions on 41 routes — later start times, or earlier end times – or both.