RTD Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC), 5/19/21
Bill Sirois, RTD, gave an introduction to RTD’s upcoming Fare Study and Fare Equity Analysis. The process should take about 18 months and does include a peer review. This will probably start early next year.
CAC was given a “deep dive” into RTD’s finances by Doug MacLeod, CFO and it captured the problems they are experiencing. They’re in the process of completing a near term budget (6 years) and a long term financial plan (30 years). There is currently a short term internal adopted budget.
They are waiting for the State Legislature’s (Gov. Polis’) final action on the new transportation bill. Passenger fares are currently only about 15% of their budget, sales taxes are about two-thirds, and the rest comes from federal grants and loans. Bonds & debt service payments come out of collected sales tax money. There’s a $7 billion limit on borrowing that will expire when FasTracks is paid off in 2050. $500 million in bonds were issued before TABOR for the base system that will be paid off in 2024. The UC Leed School of Business provides forecasting services for RTD.
When asked about other ideas for sources of Revenue, Mr. MacLeod suggested charging for parking, a property tax mill, and getting rid of unused services. Each idea comes with many problems including an election for a mill levy.