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LACMTA proposes nearly $5 billion budget for FY2014


The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA) will host a hearing on May 15 to solicit public comments on the agency's proposed $4.89 billion budget for fiscal-year 2014.

The budget contains about 7 percent more funds than the current fiscal-year budget, LACMTA officials said in a prepared statement.

The increase reflects major rail and highway planning, design and construction projects in the next fiscal year as mandated by Measure R. The agency anticipates spending about $1.3 billion on Measure R transit projects and $141 million on Measure R highway projects.

The budget also proposes keeping fares at current levels, but Chief Executive Officer Art Leahy is urging LACMTA board members to begin discussing fare restructuring for the future, agency officials said.

Leahy has noted that Metro fares are among the lowest of many major transit agencies, and Metro riders pay only 26 percent of what it costs to operate trains and buses, they said.

In drafting the FY2014 budget, Leahy also proposed spending $261 million on deferred maintenance for bus and rail vehicles and facilities, and another $37 million on capital improvements for safety and security, including $20 million for gates and other safety enhancements on the Metro Blue Line. Gates in subway and many light-rail stations will be latched, a phased-in approach that will begin in mid-June, agency officials said.

Also next year, LACMTA anticipates unveiling a master plan for Union Station. In addition, the agency expects to advance design and early construction work for the Purple Line subway extension; the Regional Connector rail line that will connect the Metro Gold, Blue and Expo lines to eliminate transfers; and the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Corridor light-rail line.

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More News from 5/1/2013