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NJ TRANSIT BOARD APPROVES $1.138 BILLION FISCAL YEAR 2002 BUDGET

Funds New Start-Ups, Maintains State of Good Repair

CONTACT: Anna Farneski (973-491-7078)

NEWARK, NJ, July 11, 2001 -- NJ TRANSIT's Board of Directors today approved a record $1.138 billion Fiscal Year 2002 (FY02) Operating Budget, which maintains and enhances existing bus and train service to meet ridership growth, and provides funds for other service improvements.

The budget includes expenditures of $1.138 billion offset by $569.4 million in passenger revenue and other system-generated revenues, $260 million in State operating assistance and $308.8 million in other State and Federal reimbursements. The FY02 budget also includes funds to address overcrowding on the bus and rail systems, and directs resources to maintain core bus and rail services, implement new service initiatives and respond to State and Federal mandates.

"This budget provides funds for new and enhanced services that will benefit thousands of additional New Jersey residents," said State Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Board Chairman James Weinstein. "Our thanks to Acting Governor Donald DiFrancesco, the State Legislature and the New Jersey Congressional Delegation for their continued support for public transportation."

"At NJ TRANSIT we are always looking for ways to increase and improve our system for the residents of the State of New Jersey and this budget enables us to cope with overcrowding, launch new services and preserve the existing levels of service," said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Jeffrey A. Warsh. "This budget also allows the Corporation to continue the critical effort of maintaining our rolling stock and ensuring the safety of our customers and employees."

Highlights include:

  • Continued Passenger Revenue/Ridership Growth -- The FY02 budget assumes the eleventh consecutive year of ridership growth. Passenger revenue is expected to increase $18.9 million in FY02 over last year's budget, bringing the total increase over the past 11 years to approximately $152 million.
  • State Operating Assistance Increase -- Consistent with the budget approved by the State Legislature, State operating funding is budgeted at $260 million, an increase of $50.9 million over the previous year, an increase of 24.3 percent.
  • Funding to Cope with Overcrowding -- The FY02 budget includes more than $13 million to address overcrowding on the bus and rail systems, including supplemental State funding of up to $4 million. Our bus and rail systems respectively attract 600 new customers per month, while some of our rail lines are at 130 percent capacity.
  • Support for New Service -- The proposed budget supports implementation of new services including the expansion of Hudson-Bergen Light Rail, and opening of the Newark International Airport Station, the Montclair Connection and the Newark City Subway Extension, and startup costs for the new East End Concourse in Penn Station New York.
  • Response to Mandates -- Also included in the budget are increased funds to comply with State and Federal mandates to increase Access Link paratransit service and respond to Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) safety mandates.

Following is more detailed information:

REVENUE

  • Ridership/Passenger Revenues -- The FY02 budget includes passenger revenue of $493.1 million. This represents an increase of $18.9 million compared to the FY01 budget.
  • Other Revenue -- Other revenues are budgeted at $76.3 million, an increase of $4.9 million compared to the FY01 budget. This reflects projected increases in revenue from facility leases, rail station parking fees and advertising on the bus/rail systems.
  • State Operating Assistance -- The FY02 budget includes State operating assistance of $260 million, an increase of $50.9 million, consistent with the State budget adopted by the State Legislature. The State budget also includes language that allows for supplemental funding of up to $4 million to address overcrowding on the bus and rail systems.
  • Other State and Federal Reimbursements -- Other State and Federal reimbursements are budgeted at $308.8 million, an increase of $28 million compared to the FY01 budget. This includes State and Federal funding designated for specific purposes including maintenance costs, county transportation programs, facility leases, capital program implementation, equipment, planning studies and a variety of other reimbursable projects. Federal capital funding increased by $46 million to support preventative maintenance costs. To offset the increased use of capital funds for operating costs, the State budget provides a one-time increased funding of $50 million from the Transportation Trust Fund to replace the Federal capital funds reprogrammed for maintenance costs.

EXPENSES

  • Labor and Fringes -- Labor and fringes, which represent approximately 60 percent of the operating budget, total $684.5 million. The budget includes increases and authorization to pay consistent with current and proposed labor contracts, the annualization of non-agreement merits and increases in fringe rates primarily due to rising medical costs. The labor budget also funds increases in bus operator and train and engine crew costs to support new service initiatives and core system service growth as well as increases for vehicle maintenance and the implementation of FRA safety mandates.
  • Fuel, Power, Materials and Supplies -- Expenses for fuel, power, materials and supplies are budgeted at $155.9 million, or approximately 14 percent of the total operating budget. This includes funding for an increase in diesel fuel prices to $.86/gallon (compared to the FY01 budgeted rate of $.70), increases in electric propulsion costs, vehicle parts and other maintenance costs.
  • Purchased Transportation -- Purchased transportation expenses are budgeted at $113.4 million, or approximately 10 percent of the budget. This includes increased funding for Hudson-Bergen Light Rail and Access Link paratransit service.
  • Other Expenses -- All other expenses are budgeted at $184.4 million, or approximately 16 percent of the budget. This includes funding for outside services, utilities, injury and damage claims, insurance, tolls, trackage fees, leases, tax, marketing and other miscellaneous costs.

NJ TRANSIT is the nation's only statewide public transportation system providing bus, rail and light rail services for 383,900 daily commuters on 240 bus routes, two light rail lines and 12 rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 162 rail stations, 26 light rail stations and more than 17,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.

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