Jeramey Jannene

RTA Likely To Be Included in Governor’s Budget

By - Feb 17th, 2009 01:24 pm
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When Governor Jim Doyle unveils his budget proposal later today, one thing that is likely to be included in it is the recommendations of the Southeastern Wisconsin RTA.  While this certainly doesn’t mean the RTA is a done deal, it’s a large step forward towards fixing transit funding issues in the Milwaukee region.

The Assembly and Senate could certainly remove it from the budget they approve, but with Democrats in control of both houses the odds of that are lower than in years past.

If Doyle had not put the recommendations in his budget, the currently advisory RTA would have dissolved, and Milwaukee would have had to wait another two years for the next budget proposal to have a shot at fixing the looming transit funding crisis (which would have been in full swing by then).

So say it’s included in the final budget, what does that mean?  Depending on the exact language, each county will then have the ability to pull the trigger on an RTA sales tax up to 0.5%.  Each county will arrive at that final amount, based on a local committee that determines a budget for the county and includes the localized cost of the KRM commuter rail line.

Today is a good day for mass transit in the Milwaukee region.

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