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NJ Transit to trim expenses, maintain fares in FY10


Despite a cutback in state operating support in fiscal-year 2010, New Jersey Transit does not plan to raise fares, agency officials told a board budget committee yesterday.

Instead, NJ Transit aims to balance its budget, in part by cutting administrative expenses by $22.5 million. The agency has reduced administrative costs to an all-time low, with expenses now accounting for eight cents out of every operating dollar, according to NJ Transit. The agency also eliminated 140 jobs this year through attrition and early retirement, and has instituted hiring and wage freezes for non-union employees.

NJ Transit also expects to reduce costs in the coming fiscal year through a dependent health benefit audit, reduced marketing expenses, and cutbacks in printing and customer service call center hours since customers now can receive more information online.

In addition, the agency is proposing a $1.3 billion capital program in FY2010 focused on safety and state-of-good-repair improvements, as well as expansion projects. Some of the improvements include the design of a new Portal Bridge on the Northeast Corridor and continuing projects, such as the Northern Branch and Lackawanna cut-off to Andover, Passaic-Bergen rail project and Mass Transit Tunnel.

The capital projects are in addition to $424 million in federal stimulus-funded projects, including the Pennsauken Transit Center, River Line and Atlantic City Rail Line connection, and River Line signal improvements.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/29/2009