Public Transportation And The Affiliated Debt

1478 words - 6 pages

Comparing the transit systems of specific metro regions in most if not all cases has similar characteristics across the country, financial issues. Transit systems from the largest in the country such as the New York City Metro Transit Authority and Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area Transit Authority with a combined 9.3 million daily ridership to the smallest such as the Rochester-Genesee Regional Transit Authority of Rochester, New York struggle with financial issues (Transit for Livable Communities, 2009). These financial issues hinder the transit systems and daily riders from cuts and delays in service due to lack of employee personal to increases in fares. In the comparison of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority of Cleveland, Ohio and Metro Transit of the Metropolitan Council in Minneapolis, Minnesota, both transit systems are in debt and struggling with ideas to shorten the debt ceiling but Cleveland and Minneapolis have different views on funding and how they plan to close their debt. In what ways can the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority and the Metro Authority of Minneapolis continue to rebuild and maintain each individual transit system while staying in the means of the budget, and reducing the amount of debt each system is currently in?
In Cleveland, Ohio the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) which was developed in 1974, consists of both a light rail and heavy rail system but relies mainly on its rapid bus system (Encyclopedia of Cleveland History, 1997). The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority carries 44 million patrons annually, with a Cleveland metropolitan population of 2.2 million (RTA Facts, 2011). The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority suffers from an outstanding debt of $142 million after 2011, and plans to borrow another $25 million in 2012 for upcoming projects such as the rebuilding of various rapid transit stations (Miller).
The Metro Transit of the Metropolitan Council in Minneapolis, Minnesota founded in 1967, consists of a light and commuter rail system, but relies heavily on its transit bus system. The Metro Transit moves nearly 14 million commuters annually (Olsen). To avoid serious debt due to sever budget slashes, the Metro Transit of Minneapolis has made extreme cuts with nearly a third of its service diminished. For the Metro Transit of Minneapolis 2030 Transportation Policy Plan, the transit council still plans to develop and rebuild the rail and bus system using grants from the local and state government, which amount to over $150 million (Governance of Transit, 2011).
The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority has multiple methods of funding to support its finances other than borrowing and the typical collection of fares per ride. On a yearly basis, the local and state government provides the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority with subsidies and grants to support its expenditure. In 2011, the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit...

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