April 29, 2013
In 2007, the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia (Economy
League) and Econsult were commissioned by the William Penn Foundation to
evaluate the consequences of underfunding SEPTA on southeastern Pennsylvania
and the Commonwealth. Funding solutions were identified and acted upon, but
circumstances have changed and once again in 2013, despite achieving its
highest ridership levels in 23 years, SEPTA is confronted with a
serious funding shortfall, especially for capital funding required to maintain
and improve its infrastructure and system.
Economy League and Econsult Solutions
have again teamed to reexamine SEPTA's role in the Commonwealth's economy and
analyze the value of expanded Commonwealth investment in SEPTA. The report, this time commissioned by
SEPTA, has three main goals:
- To understand the economic value of SEPTA, in
terms of economic and fiscal impacts on the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania;
- To determine how SEPTA compares to other transit
agencies in terms of performance, scope, and revenue sources; and
- To provide updated, nonpartisan information to
state lawmakers and stakeholders as the decision on how to fund SEPTA is considered.
For the purpose
of this report, the Economy League and ESI conducted five sets of analyses to
answer the following questions:
- To what extent do the five counties of southeastern
Pennsylvania - Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia - contribute
to the Commonwealth's transportation-related revenues, and are the beneficiaries
of transportation-related expenditures?
- To what extent has SEPTA been a good steward of
- How does the performance of SEPTA operations
compare to Commonwealth agencies and industry peers?
- What are SEPTA's economic and fiscal impacts on southeastern
Pennsylvania and the Commonwealth?
- What are the possible long-term consequences of
inadequate, status quo funding levels on southeastern Pennsylvania and the Commonwealth?
Read the report, executive summary, presentation, and press release below.