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6/24/2013



Rail News: Passenger Rail

North County Transit District balances budget for FY2014


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The North County Transit District's (NCTD) board last week adopted a fiscal-year 2014 operating budget that funds service increases, maintains 2011 fare reductions, and project's the highest ridership and revenue in the agency's history.

The budget projects five years of balanced budgets through FY2018 and includes operating contingencies of at least $1 million, NCTD officials said in a press release.

The Oceanside, Calif-based agency anticipates FY2014 ridership to reach 12.6 million and fare revenue to total $19.3 million. NCTD officials also are projecting total customer revenue of $91.5 million and a 4.7 percent increase in systemwide boardings in FY2014.

The financial picture is based on the result of a 5.3 percent ridership increase and an 8.8 percent revenue hike during the past two years.

In addition, as a result of cost-reduction strategies implemented over the past four years, the transit agency has built a 15 percent operating reserve and funded the capital improvement program at $27 million, which is $12 million above the annual goal of $15 million. This money will be used for rail system improvements and bridge repair or replacement work, NCTD officials said.

The balanced budget is the result of the board's decision four years ago to reshape the agency's business model to enhance service, stabilize finances and improve organizational performance and business culture, they said.



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