TransLink deficit decreasing despite expenses 0
TransLink has halved the company's 22 executive positions - a move that has reduced its deficit. (24 HOURS FILE PHOTO)
TransLink's reshuffling of service hours and staff has brought the corporation closer to the black but salaries and expenses are up, according to its 2011 financial report released Tuesday.
The Crown corporation's CEO Ian Jarvis, during a teleconference Tuesday, said ridership climbed 6.6% and fare revenue jumped 5%. He also noted that bus service improved last year, based on speed and reliability.
Jarvis said the company's 22 executive positions in 2009 have also been halved, and according to an earlier report, all the "efficiencies" mean TransLink recorded a deficit of $34.3 million at the end of last year - better than the projected $59.1 million.
"In the meantime, we continue with our own efforts to build the service optimization, continuing to drive more transit fare revenue by reallocating existing hours to more productive use," he told reporters.
Meanwhile, salaries and expenses shot up 20.8% and 29.9%, respectively.
Jarvis said this is largely due to merging more than 100 information technology specialists from Coast Mountain Bus Company - which handles the fleet - to TransLink as part of a centralization strategy.
"With the transfer of the information technology folks, those are highly technical and specific areas, the rate of the relative spending for training for those individuals to keep up to speed with technology issues is likely the factor," he said.
Jarvis added part of the boost was also due to the relocation cost of a former planning vice-president, $104,315 to pay for his move from Chicago to Vancouver in 2009, which accounted for 42.3% of the expense increase.
That executive's position was eliminated in April this year.