The $458 million operating budget that begins July 1, 2012, includes internal efficiencies, fare changes and service cuts to close a $12 million shortfall.
The shortfall stems from the slow economic recovery, potential cuts in federal operating funds and an unresolved union contract.
Board President Bruce Warner said, "During this budget process, the agency faced many tough choices but we believe this is a responsible and sound budget. It reflects the public and the Board's priority to preserve service and navigate the financial uncertainties ahead."
TriMet made internal cuts, including layoffs, to minimize service cuts and impact to riders.
Elimination of fare zones and creating flat fare system adds $6 million in revenue. Effective September 1, 2012, fares are required on MAX in Downtown Portland and the Lloyd District. This change results in $2.7 million in savings.
TriMet will adjust the LIFT paratransit service boundaries to match nearby regular bus/MAX service. LIFT trips would only be provided if there is nearby fixed-route bus or rail service in operation during that time. This change still keeps TriMet service exceeding ADA standards. It saves $400,000 a year.
TriMet will reduce its contribution to the Portland Streetcar by $300,000.
Fares changes take effect on September 1, 2012; service changes take effect September 2, 2012.