No Fare Hikes for Chicago in 2019 Budget
The Chicago Transit Agency (CTA) released its 2019 budget and it will not include any fare increases for its base fares or multi-day-passes. "Local commuters will be glad to hear that today the agency proposed a $1.552 billion operating budget with no fare hikes or reductions in bus and train service hours or frequency, while a number of infrastructure projects are in the works," John Greenfield reports for Streetsblog Chicago. Among the many capital programs the agency is considering are station improvements, modernization for the Purple and Red Lines, and a flyover at Belmont.
The CTA also emphasized the need for state support. “The agency is also proposing a $2.9 billion five-year capital budget for 2019-2023,” Greenfield reports. Illinois has not had a capital investment bill in more than ten years.
The CTA says it’s also been able to find some cost savings and has imposed a hiring freeze. “The agency claims that since 2015 under Carter, the CTA has raised over $150 million due to cost-cutting, efficiencies, and non-farebox revenue, such as advertising,” Greenfield writes.