At the last board of directors meeting, Caltrain reported that the proposed 2015 operating budget will be balanced, running the same schedule as this past year, and 64% of its revenue from riders. The budget does not yet include the costs or proposed revenues of running the additional cars that Caltrain is acquiring from Metrolink.
The capital budget, however, isn’t close. Caltrain is asking its 3 partners in San Francisco, Santa Clara, and San Mateo counties to contribute $109 million (down from $190 million last year) and the partners are offering only $10.5 million. Staff report that the agencies are still negotiating.
Without dedicated funding, Caltrain should at least prepare a two year budget with its partners, to reduce the level of annual last-minute negotiations, and allay concerns that the agency won’t have enough funding to fix equipment to prevent breakdowns.