Local News in Brief : Countywide : OCTD Budget Proposal Targets Reserve Funds

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The Orange County Transit District’s $87-million proposed operating budget for 1988-89, unveiled publicly Monday, calls for spending $37.8 million of the agency’s reserve funds for transit routes and exclusive bus, car and van-pool lanes along congested county freeways.

The proposed budget, provided by General Manager James P. Reichert at OCTD’s regular biweekly meeting, is 5.6% higher than the current $82.5-million budget. The biggest change in the proposed budget is in taking $37.8 million from the agency’s reserve fund for initial design and construction work on its transit projects.

The proposed budget marks the first time the special $200-million reserve has been tapped for spending.


About $13 million of the reserve funds would go toward buying a 4.5-mile stretch of Southern Pacific Railroad land along the Santa Ana Freeway between Katella Avenue in Anaheim and Washington Avenue in Santa Ana.

The reserve, originally for construction of light rail projects, has been accumulating for 10 years. It now is targeted for building the 19-mile transit system, OCTD spokeswoman Joanne Curran said. The entire $440-million system, to be finished by the mid-1990s, will run along portions of the Costa Mesa, San Diego, Santa Ana and Orange freeways.