After a detailed cost analysis, HART officials say they are able to reallocate almost $9 million back into Hillsborough County.
According to HART Public Information Officer Marcia Mejia, the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART)
determined that several projects were significantly under budget upon completion, allowing the money to go toward Hillsborough County infrastructure needs
, if desired.
“In an era when such projects frequently incur cost overruns, it is important for HART to demonstrate that we have been and will continue to be responsible stewards of taxpayer money,” Mejia says.
Funded by Hillsborough County Community Investment Tax (CIT)
, a total of just more than $8.9 million is currently available for reallocation with the MetroRapid East-West project
offering $1 million and the MetroRapid North-South
offering approximately $5.7 million. The Brandon Park and Ride
was completed with a little more than $2 million remaining. Made available by capital funding, the remaining funds cannot be reallocated toward operational costs such as bus routes.
HART also recently announced proposed changes
to fares and services, addressing a number of issues including increased operational costs and decreased ad valorem revenues. These changes include raising the One-Way Cash and 1-Day Unlimited Ride Fares
by about 25 cents with changes also affecting 1-Day Unlimited HARTFlex, 3-Day Unlimited, 31-Day Unlimited, 1-Day 10 Pack Unlimited and ADA Paratransit
fares. Bus route and schedule changes may be made as well.
“Bus route and schedule changes proposed for November 2012 will streamline some routes while boosting service for others,” Mejia says.
Writer: Alexis Quinn Chamberlain
Source: Marcia Mejia, HART