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BART Plans To Spend Surplus On Grimy Seats, Stations

OAKLAND (KCBS) – While most California transit agencies are dealing with multi-million dollar deficits, BART's latest projections indicate a surplus, which could help keep trains cleaner in the future.

The preliminary budget for the 2012 fiscal year projects a positive net result of between $10 and $28 million.

KCBS' Chris Filippi Reports:

BART spokesman Jim Allison said a selective hiring freeze and cuts in non-labor expenses helped the agency to get its fiscal house in order, but the amount of the surplus will depend on state funding decisions yet to be made in Sacramento.

"We're holding off on going ahead with some of these initiatives until we find out what's going to happen with the governor's budget," he said. "We're hopeful that the budget will be passed as it is and we'll get about $15 million from the state."

If the plan moves forward, BART customers can look forward to new seat covers and cushions, cleaner and quieter trains and more reliable escalators, upgrades most passengers said they would warmly welcome.

The budget still needs to be approved by the BART Board of Directors, who will take up the matter on Thursday.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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