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6/8/2004



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Los Angeles MTA approves FY04 budget


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Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA MTA) recently adopted a $2.9 billion fiscal-year 2005 budget, which calls for eliminating 233 jobs and reducing administrative costs. Fares will remain the same.

"This is not a happy budget," said LA MTA Chief Executive Officer Roger Snoble in a prepared statement. "Our efforts to improve mobility in los Angeles County have been slowed, largely because LA County may lose up to $2.3 billion in state transportation funding in FY03 and FY09."

The budget is $89 million more than the FY2004 budget, mainly because of the six-mile Metro Gold Line Eastside extension, which the authority plans to begin constructing this summer. LA MTA also will begin building a 14-mile transitway between Warner Center and the North Hollywood Metro Rail Station.

To offset higher expenses — such as fuel and security costs — and dwindling state transportation funding, the authority cut non-labor expenses 11 percent, including more than $7 million from travel, training, materials and supply budgets.

LA MTA included $525 million — 18.4 percent of the budget — for rail operating, construction and capital costs. Another $55 million was budgeted for L.A. County’s subsidy for the Metrolink commuter-rail system serving Los Angeles and four outlying counties.

Employees, who did not receive wage increases in FY2004, will receive a 2.5 percent increase in FY2005.



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