MBTA Advisory Board offers outside aid, surcharges as alternative to drastic T cuts

76637f6b43d005d04d4a5aaf7cf3231b

Members of the MBTA Advisory Board have cooked up a solution to the T’s
looming debt that would put the burden of closing the $161 million
budget gap on the shoulders of the whole state, rather than just the
riders.

In a 24-page report, the board outlined a proposal that could generate $91.6 million in new revenue and find an additional $79 million in savings through transportation reform, without cutting MBTA services.

The proposal also only calls for a 25 percent fare increase, which is lower than the T’s proposed fare increases.

“The public is demanding a new alternative and no one has put one out there yet,” said Brian Kane, budget and policy analyst for the advisory board.

According to the report, by shifting the cost of the MBTA Transit Police Department to the state while handing over ferry services and selling waterfront assets to Massport, the T could save millions.

Universities and public venues that benefit from the T would also be asked to chip in some cash, while concert and sporting event attendees would get slapped with a 50 cents surcharge on tickets to go toward the transit authority.

The report also calls for students to pay a $10 annual student ID fee to help maintain critical services.
While they admit it’s not perfect, Kane said the board’s plan is a feasible solution to close the gap by the T’s deadline in the spring.

MBTA?GM says officials mulling it over

According to the board, “[the proposal] provides a window of opportunity for the Patrick-Murray administration to lead us out of this mess.”

MBTA officials said they received the report yesterday and are in the process of reviewing it. Acting General Manager Jon Davis said he’ll meet with the Advisory Board’s executive director in the next few weeks. He called it a “thoughtful approach,” but said it is too early to tell what could be implemented. 

Alternative options

The report highlights the following ideas:
   
Avoid proposed service cuts.
Add a 50 cents surcharge on tickets to sporting events and theaters to go toward the T.
Reinstate alcohol advertisements on T vehicles.
Ask institutions/colleges that benefit from the T to “put money on the table.”
No MBTA pay raises for any employees in fiscal 2013.
Increase parking costs by 25 percent at select stations.


Advisory Board Plan


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

News

Mets mascot Mr. Met target of Bill Clinton…

Mets mascot Mr. Met has told how he ended up in the crosshairs of a Secret Service sniper rifle. The man behind the Mr. Met…

International

Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."

National

Chelsea Clinton pregnant with first child

Chelsea Clinton is pregnant with her first child.

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

Movies

Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.

Television

Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…

Television

Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon preview: Elite American, International runners…

2014 Boston Marathon: Elite American, International runners to watch

NBA

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams…

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams have the best shot at a championship. The Thunder, Clippers, Heat and Rockets lead the way.

NFL

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.

Travel

Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.

Tech

Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.