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5/10/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

LA MTA proposes $2.9 billion FY2005 budget


On May 20, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LAMTA) will hold a public hearing on its proposed $2.9 billion fiscal-year 2005 budget, which includes $525 million to fund Metro Rail operating, construction and capital costs. The FY2005 budget would increase $89 million compared with the FY2004 budget.

Authority officials plan to cut at least 233 jobs to help make up for a state funding shortfall. LA MTA also proposes to reduce administrative costs 11 percent by lowering travel, training, material and supply expenses. Fares will remain the same.

"This is not a happy budget," said Chief Executive Officer Roger Snoble in a prepared statement. "Our efforts to improve mobility in Los Angeles County have been slowed, largely because we expect the county to lose $2.3 billion in state transportation funding between FY03 and FY09."

However, officials still expect to move forward with some key projects. The authority will begin building a six-mile Metro Gold Line Eastside light-rail extension to Little Tokyo and East Los Angeles this summer. LA MTA also will begin constructing a 14-mile Metro Orange Line transitway traveling between Warner Center and the North Hollywood Metro Rail station.

Employees — who did not receive a wage increase in FY2004 — will receive a 2.5 percent pay increase in FY2005.

The board is expected to adopt a budget at its June 7 meeting.


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