Toronto, ON - July 20, 2007- At an emergency meeting today, the Toronto Transit Commission cut operating costs by between $4 and $5 million in an initial response to the City's request for $30 million in cuts in 2007.
The TTC will:
- Defer indefinitely the September 2007 service additions planned to reduce overcrowding and improve peak period service.
- Postpone the opening of the Mount Dennis Garage until at least January, 2008.
"Cutting service improvements that our riders have eagerly awaited is not an action that any Commissioner wants to take," said TTC Chair Adam Giambrone, "but have to respond to the financial reality we're faced with. Our decisions today are painful but responsible. I can only say that this is a sad day. I hope it is only a delay and that our riders will hang in with us."
At a meeting September 12th, the Commission will review options for a fare increase, including scenarios that minimize the impact on Metropass prices. The August Commission meeting has been cancelled.
The TTC, working with Giambrone and Vice Chair Joe Mihevc, will consult with the community regarding the options for a fare increase, the impact on the affected communities of the reduction or elimination of service on the poorest-performing bus routes in the City, and the mechanisms for the possible elimination of service on the Sheppard Subway.
The Commission will review a strategy for minimizing or eliminating layoffs - with specific reference to savings through attrition - in the TTC workforce in the event that service cuts are made.
The TTC will also identify cost containment measures, with updates to the City Manager as they become available. The Commission has asked for a report on employment increase since 1996, a study of the economic and environmental impact of service reductions and decreasing transit use, and the potential impact of delaying construction of the Spadina Subway.
The TTC is cutting budget costs because the City has insufficient sources of revenue; has depleted its reserves and one-time solutions, and is still dealing with the costs of services downloaded by the province.