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CTA Boss: No More Doomsdays For Transit Agency

CHICAGO (CBS) -- No more doomsdays – that was the promise from Chicago Transit Authority President Forrest Claypool on Monday as the agency pushed its new budget.

WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports, almost every year in the past several years, CTA officials have gone to Springfield and predicted financial disaster if state funding wasn't increased, or more borrowing was not approved.

But Claypool told the City Club of Chicago on Monday those days are over, "because we finally structurally fixed the CTA's finances, so that the labor cost curve has been bent; we've made significant management reform to take tens of millions of dollars of waste out of the system; and we've created a more balanced relationship between the fares and the passes, so that there's a stable financial footing that will last for years to come."

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore Reports


He also praised what he described as the first negotiated contract agreement with the previously contentious Amalgamated Transit Union.

"The heavy lifting of getting this massive budget deficit – more than $300 million – eradicated is behind us, and that provides a stable fiscal footing going forward that protects service and garcinia cambogia extract … as well as the jobs that provide that service," he said.

While basic train and bus fares would remain unchanged under the CTA's budget plan for 2013, the prices for daily, 3-day, 7-day and 30-day unlimited ride passes would go up. Although the discounts for those passes would be reduced, Claypool said they're still a bargain for regular commuters.

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