Antonio lobbies for transit funding

Antonio lobbies for transit funding
Mayor: Governor’s plan will hurt poor, elderly
BY HARRISON SHEPPARD, Sacramento Bureau
LA Daily News
Article Last Updated:05/23/2007 09:16:20 PM PDT

SACRAMENTO – Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa returned to Sacramento on Wednesday to lobby against proposed cuts in public transit and push for increased funding for his anti-gang proposals.

Villaraigosa, who met with legislative leaders, said Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s proposed 2007-08 budget will contribute to fare increases in Southern California transit, and punishes the poor and elderly, who use the system the most.

“We should promote ridership at a time when gas prices are up to $4 a gallon,” Villaraigosa said at a news conference with blankembly Speaker Fabian Nu ez, D-Los Angeles.

“We should protect fare-box money in a way that’s rational and reasonable over a five-year period. We don’t think we should balance the budget on the backs of the riding public.”

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority – the Metro – is looking at more than doubling its fares over the next five years to help address a $1.8 billion operating budget deficit.

Villaraigosa said he has proposed a more modest plan to increase fares by 5 percent every year for five years.

Getting more money from the state, he said, could help keep fare increases under control, though not prevent them altogether.

Metro officials have said the state transit cuts will cost the agency about $230 million next year.

Transit advocates say the governor’s budget cuts about $1.3 billion from public transit statewide. The administration, however, contends that the budget does not cut public transportation at all.

The state Finance Department said the public transit budget will actually grow to about $2.6 billion next year, up from about $1.4 billion this year.

However, most of that extra funding actually represents a shift in spending practices, whereby programs that had been funded elsewhere in the budget in the past are now falling under the account for “transportation.”

For example, about $630 million of the “cut” is transportation money that is being shifted to pay for school busing. In the past, school busing has been funded under the education budget.

By shifting it, the money is still going toward a transportation-related purpose, but less of it is going to transportation programs that would otherwise have received that money.

stef Posted by on May 22 2007. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply

CAPTCHA Image
*

Search Archive

Search by Date
Search by Category
Search with Google

Photo Gallery

Log in |
  • Hispanic Gangs
  • Prison Gangs
  • Email
  • Other Cities
  • music
  • Crip Gangs
  • Blood Gangs
  • Asian Gangs
  • Forums
  • Shop
  • Contact
  • Resources