The fund serves as a reserve for the authority and is meant to provide a cushion against unexpected costs or ridership declines. SEPTA drew $26 million from the fund last year to cover unexpected costs related to the harsh winter and ridership declines because of the faltering economy.
This year, ridership was up by 12.2 million trips.
However, unless the state approves more funding for SEPTA, the authority will be forced to deplete the fund over the next several years to cover rising operating costs. Transportation funding was cut when the federal government would not permit Pennsylvania to toll Interstate 80.
Gov. Corbett’s transportation funding commission, which is looking at ways of raising infrastructure dollars through fee increases and other means, is slated to release its report by the end of July.
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