Politicians inside and outside the Chicago Transit Authority say the CTA needs more taxpayer money. The Chicago Tribune's Dennis Byrne says that it needs more money--from its passengers.
As I have mentioned before, mass transit is one of the best transportation deals around; taxpayers match every dollar riders pay in fares. If commuters paid, say, 60 or 75 percent of their rides' cost, instead of 50 percent, perhaps transit wouldn't be knocking on our doors so often. With this, I'm not suggesting that taxpayers should no longer subsidize mass transit, as some of my critics charged. Even if riders paid a fairer share of the cost of their rides, they would still benefit from hundreds of millions of dollars a year in taxpayer largesse.
Byrne then heaps some praise on the Illinois Policy Institute:
Which leads to another, thoughtful suggestion, presented in a new study by the Illinois Policy Institute, a free-market think tank. It challenges the common assumption that the only "sustainable solution" to the Chicago Transit Authority's problem is to increase revenues, with some fascinating and surprising findings.
The Institute calls for increased productivity on the part of the CTA, as well as other changes. You can read the report here.