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CTA to Cut Chicago Jobs

Posted on September 10, 2008

One major fixture is cutting Chicago jobs.

Earlier this week, the Chicago Transit Authority announced it would save about $40 million in costs by cutting some operations and jobs. The company has cut 43 Chicago jobs, including nine management positions, and plans to cut even more positions in the near future.

According to an article by Progressive Railroading, CTA also cut jobs by realigning its technology, purchasing and law departments. By the end of the year, the company plans to cut a total of 80 administrative jobs through layoffs and attrition, a move expected to save the company $4.9 million.

The company also plans to outsource its refuse collection at some facilities, which should save more than $500,000 per year, defer contract spending and reduce overtime.

The reason for the cuts can most likely be attributed to high fuel prices, lower tax proceeds, a state subsidy loss and a new free-ride mandate. While the company has not yet set its 2009 budget, these setbacks are already taxing the CTA.

“Earlier this year, the Illinois General Assembly passed legislation to provide CTA with additional funding to balance its operating budget and enable the agency to issue bonds to restore the pension fund and establish a retiree health care trust.” the article notes. “However, the economic slow down has resulted in lower-than-projected sales tax revenues.”

“In addition, the state mandated that CTA provide free rides to senior citizens and Gov. Rod Blagojevich vetoed a reduced fare reimbursement program that would have offset a portion of lost ticket revenue,” the article adds.

According to the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Chicago area’s total non-farm employment in July 2008 was at 3,905,000, a decrease of .1 percent from last year.