"Our ridership went from 405,000 to 24,000. And since the low of 24 thousand, we've now inched up to 45," said BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost.
Fewer riders meant less revenue for the agency. And that's what shaped the budget, which includes an extra 44 million dollars for cleaning and disinfecting.
RELATED: BART discusses lean $915 million budget for upcoming year amid low ridership due to COVID-19
"It's not just cleaning the stations, but it's disinfecting the train cars every single night," Trost said.
There's also $146 million in cuts made by eliminating unfilled jobs, and reducing operating expenses like putting off a return to ending service at midnight. But there are no layoffs planned.
"You're going to notice things like the 9p.m. closure in the middle of the day, you should expect 30 minute frequencies," Trost said.
RELATED: Rearranged seats and personal hand straps: BART reveals 15-step plan to getting service back on track
BART rider Ellie Fisher of Lafayette is not surprised.
"The economy is struggling, I know. BART's losing a lot of money. Everything's losing a lot of money," she said.
The budget plan assumes that at best 50 percent of riders return this year. But that number could be as low as 15 percent. BART customer Adrienne of Walnut Creek is betting that riders will come back and service will be restored.
"It's a temporary fix. When you get the riders back, it will change and amend the budget," she said. The BART board may amend the budget as soon as October when members revisit ridership and revenue numbers.
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