IndyGo seeks funding traction

It’s almost fall—the start of IndyGo’s annual scramble to find cash to at least sustain its current level of bus service.

The Indianapolis Public Transportation Corp. has budgeted expenses of $57 million for 2012, but officials expect a revenue shortfall of $6.4 million because of drops in federal, state and local funding. A loss of one-time funding and fuel increases also contribute to the gap.

IndyGo’s board will look at options such as service reductions, fare increases and how the agency uses capital funds. A public hearing is set for 5 p.m. Aug. 18 at the bus system’s headquarters along West Washington Street.

The City-County Council isn’t expected to approve a final budget for IndyGo until October.

In the future, relief to the perennially underfunded IndyGo could come with the establishment of a new taxing mechanism in the region to pay for a commuter railroad system and bus service improvements.

Leaders of the Indy Connect transit initiative are contemplating plans to seek a funding mechanism through the Indiana General Assembly. Driving Indy Connect are the Indianapolis Metropolitan Planning Organization, IndyGo, the Central Indiana Regional Transportation Authority and the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership.

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