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10/21/2008



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Houston METRO signs off on FY09 spending plan, fare increase


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority of Harris County, Texas (METRO) recently approved a fiscal-year 2009 budget that includes a 25 percent base fare increase.

The spending plan includes a $330 million operating budget, $163.7 million general mobility budget and $520.5 million capital budget.

To offset rising fuel and other costs, light-rail and bus fares will increase from $1 to $1.25. Park-and-ride fares also will go up between 25 and 33 percent, depending on the zone. The fare increase is expected to generate $14 million in additional revenue in the fiscal year, helping offset a projected $23 million fuel budget increase.

METRO plans to implement additional 4 percent or 5 percent fare hikes in FY2010 and FY2011 to keep pace with inflation.


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