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5/23/2008



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

LA MTA signs off on $3.4 billion FY09 budget


Yesterday, the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA MTA) board adopted a $3.4 billion budget for fiscal-year 2008-09, which begins July 1.

The spending plan is $230 million, or 7.3 percent, higher than the current budget to help offset increased subsidies for local transit services, and costs to launch Metro Gold Line service to East Los Angeles in 2009 and rehabilitate rail cars. The budget earmarks $781 million for county-wide rail service, including Metro Rail operating and capital costs, and a $65.4 million Metrolink subsidy.

In addition to opening the six-mile Metro Gold Line from downtown L.A.’s Union Station to East Los Angeles next year, the authority plans to continue building the Exposition light-rail line from downtown L.A. to Culver City. LA MTA also will continue planning studies or environmental and preliminary engineering work on several rail, bus and highway projects.

The spending plan does not include a fare increase. However, the state might cut transit funding as it seeks ways to make up a projected $20 billion budget deficit. LA MTA currently is due to receive $227.1 million in State Transit Assistance funding next year.


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