Public transit budgets difficult to predict

NORWICH – Chenango County lawmakers authorized an additional $70,000 in state reimbursements to First Transit for transportation services at the end of last year in order to cover a budget shortfall. The amount is much less than in years past, when, for example, in 2010, the year-end additional funding was $250,000.

Clerk of the Board RC Woodford said budgeters come as close as they can to predict the numbers of passengers and miles to be traveled each year. Operating assistance from the New York Department of Transportation is per passenger, per mile. First Transit’s budget for 2012 was $1.28 million; for 2013, it’s $1.4.

“Some years we end up just short. Older budgets, we might have had $900,000, but we found that we were having to add at year end, so we bumped it up to where it would seem to be closer,” Woodford said.

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