Wednesday, November 12, 2008

CTA board votes Wednesday on fare hikes

Chi-Town Daily News:
Threatened fare increases could become reality Wednesday when the Chicago Transit Authority board votes on its proposed 2009 budget.

The CTA’s budget calls for an increase of at least a quarter to ride the cities buses and trains beginning in January, and the cost of a 30-day pass would to rise to $90 from $75. Discounts for Chicago Card users would be eliminated, as well.

The CTA’s budget for 2009 is $1.324 billion, up 9.5 percent from its 2008 budget of $1.209 billion. The CTA’s budget shortfall is pegged at $42.2 million, and both CTA President Ron Huberman and board Chair Carole Brown have said fare increases would plug the hole without forcing the agency to cut services.

Agency officials say the budget does not divert cash needed for physical improvements to the system to pay for operations.The board will vote on the budget during a 10 a.m. meeting Wednesday at CTA headquarters, 567 W. Lake. The meeting is open to the public.

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