MARTA: New Economic Forecast Predicts Worsening Budget Crisis

ATLANTA — The latest economic forecast issued in December 2008 for MARTA by the Georgia State Economic Forecasting Center predicts a further worsening of its current fiscal crisis by an additional $10 million, the transit agency said.

The forecast also predicts MARTA will experience a cumulative loss of more than $1.2 billion in sales tax revenue over the next ten years – that is up an additional $588 million from its fall 2008 report.

“This latest forecast truly underscores the magnitude and severity of the economic times that we are currently dealing with,” said Beverly A. Scott, MARTA General Manager and CEO. “There is no way MARTA can manage the continuing slump of this economy with our current resources.”

Last month, MARTA announced a “budget shortfall” of $60 million based on an economic forecast issued by the GSEFC in September. The authority implemented a number of budget reduction measures, which saved the authority $11 million.