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7/19/2007



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Pennsylvania legislature provides Pittsburgh port authority with $55 million in operating funds, $12 million in capital funds



Yesterday, the Pennsylvania legislature passed House Bill 1590, providing the Port Authority of Allegheny County about $55 million in badly needed operating funds and $12 million in new capital funds in FY2008. The funding closes a $44.6 million FY2008 operating deficit the authority had planned to offset with funds previously designated for capital purposes.

In June, the authority implemented a 15 percent service reduction and laid off 203 employees. Earlier this month, the authority announced plans to eliminate 34 rail and bus routes and cut Saturday and/or Sunday service on 18 others, and furlough another 174 workers in September – with the stipulation that if the Pennsylvania legislature approved additional funding for state transit agencies, the authority would rescind the service and job cuts.

“The members of the State House and Senate who voted for this funding package have helped preserve the Commonwealth’s ability to compete and keep state residents connected to the places they need to reach every day,” said Port Authority Chief Executive Officer Steve Bland in a prepared statement.



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