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Local Transportation Feeling Effects From Recent Government Shutdown

Written by on February 5, 2019

NORMAL – During the recent 30+ day-long government shutdown, local bus company Connect Transit had to rely on its own reserve funds to make up for its lost federal funding during the time period. While Connect Transit was able to sustain itself on those dollars, the effect still took its toll.

However, the bus company’s Chairman of the Board of Trustees Mike McCurdy says that if the shutdown continues much longer, they might have to consider other options to move forward. This could potentially mean taking out loans from the bank.

“Connect Transit has some reserves that we can rely on, but if it goes beyond thirty days – and we’re at that point now – we may have to look at a revolving line of credit.”

In late 2016, the lack of a state budget in Illinois nearly caused Connect Transit to cease operations. While they receive a great deal of their funds from the federal government, the money received at the state level is far higher. As a result, McCurdy says that the current government shutdown is “not having as profound of an impact on the budget”.

In this scenario where federal funds are the issue, Connect Transit is prepared to do what it needs to do if the shutdown doesn’t end soon.

“We generally do a federal drawdown of our funds once a month, and we’ve missed one of those. One isn’t a big deal, but when it comes time for the second one, that’s when I think staff is going to have to start looking into whether or not they have to get a line of credit.”

Zach Wilson contributed to this story.

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