Metro committee approves $4.7B budget for FY2022
Metro will be able to maintain current service levels, avoid cuts
With an injection of federal funding, Metro will be able to maintain current service and accelerate repairs on the public transportation system. On Thursday, the Metro Board of Directors’ Finance and Capital Committee approved a $4.7 billion operating and capital budget for fiscal year 2022, which begins July 1.
The full board is expected to approve the budget on April 22, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority announced in a news release. Under the $2.07 billion operating budget, Metro will keep service at 80% to 85% of pre-pandemic levels, supported by $722.9 million in federal relief funding, which includes $193.4 million allocated last month through the American Rescue Plan Act. Before the $1.9 trillion act was passed, Metro anticipated cuts to bus and rail service, station closures and layoffs.
“The impact of the pandemic on ridership and revenue forced us to consider drastic cuts that would have been necessary absent federal relief funding. Thankfully, the American Rescue Plan Act has provided a lifeline for Metro to serve customers and support the region’s economic recovery,” Metro Board Chair Paul C. Smedberg said in a statement. “We heard from more than 25,000 people how important affordable and frequent transit is to them, and we will consider those comments carefully as we determine how to allocate the remaining federal support to meet the region’s mobility needs in the coming year and beyond.”
Meanwhile, the system expects to start service for the second phase of the Silver Line and the new Potomac Yard Station in Alexandria, as well as five Metrobus routes transferred to Fairfax Connector, which will start in July. Metro’s $12.3 billion, six-year capital rebuilding campaign will continue in the next fiscal year, including rehab work on platforms and the purchase of new 8000-series railcars. Many of the updates address safety recommendations by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission. For fiscal year 2022, $2.6 billion is allocated to capital work.