Like other transit agencies across the nation, the RTC has experienced a severe impact to our transit operations budget due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mainly funded by sales tax and passenger fares, we’ve lost a significant amount of funding due to decreased revenue and a drop in ridership. At the same time, expenses have remained the same with extra vehicle cleaning and disinfecting, additional service for social distancing, and new technologies for a safer ride.
It’s been a tough balancing act, but fortunately, now we’ve got some much-needed funding relief!
The RTC has gotten relief from the federal government twice this year, totaling around $182 million that will help carry us through the next several years. This amount will fund our transit operations, keep essential staff employed and help with fuel and personal protective equipment costs.
We’re thankful our elected officials fought for funding on our behalf, so we can continue providing transit service to the customers who rely on us to get to and from work, grocery stores, medical appointments and other essential services.
We also received $500,000 recently through the COVID-19 Research Demonstration Grant Program to replace and install new electronic validators on our buses. Customers will be able to buy passes with a credit card on these new validators, so we’re very excited to offer that feature later this year. Stay tuned for more updates!