Public gets second crack at RTA's proposed 2009 budget

  • By Amy Lee
  • Transit reporter
  • November 11, 2008 @ 12:30 PM

Tomorrow, the public gets another opportunity to comment on the Regional Transportation Authority's proposed 2009 budget and capital investment plans.

This is the second round of meetings the agency has held to gauge public reaction. tomorrow's meeting is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at the University Center of Lake County, 1200 University Center Dr., Grayslake.

RTA provides oversight, funding and regional planning for the Chicago Transit Authority, Metra commuter rail and Pace suburban bus and paratransit. It is required to solicit public comment on its budget, governance reforms and capital investment plans. The agency is facing an estimated shortfall of at least $92 million this year.

Public hearings began Monday in McHenry County and will take place at 11 other Chicagoland locations through Nov. 19.

RTA Executive Director Steve Schlickman in August told the Daily News that rising fuel prices, free rides for seniors and military personnel, the loss of state funding for reduced fares and the economic downturn have strained the agency's finances.

Amy Lee is a Chicago-based journalist. She covers transit issues for the Daily News.