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Mission Statement

The mission of the Division of Transit Services is to provide an effective mix of public transportation services in Montgomery County.

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Budget Overview

The total approved FY23 Operating Budget for the Division of Transit Services is $172,950,321, an increase of $18,417,656 or 11.92 percent from the FY22 Approved Budget of $154,532,665. Personnel Costs comprise 57.34 percent of the budget for 869 full-time position(s) and 32 part-time position(s), and a total of 910.61 FTEs. Total FTEs may include seasonal or temporary positions and may also reflect workforce charged to or from other departments or funds. Operating Expenses account for the remaining 42.66 percent of the FY23 budget.

The general obligation bond Debt Service for the Mass Transit Fund is appropriated in the Debt Service Fund and is not displayed in this section. To pay for the Debt Service, a transfer of funds from the Mass Transit Fund to the Debt Service Fund of $22,146,340 is required.

In addition, this department's Capital Improvements Program (CIP) requires Current Revenue funding.

County Priority Outcomes

While this program area supports all eight of the County Result Areas, the following are emphasized:

  • Thriving Youth and Families
  • A Greener County
  • Easier Commutes

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Program Performance Measures

Performance measures for this department are included below (where applicable), with multi-program measures displayed at the front of this section and program-specific measures shown with the relevant program. The FY22 estimates reflect funding based on the FY22 approved budget. The FY23 and FY24 figures are performance targets based on the FY23 approved budget and funding for comparable service levels in FY24.

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Initiatives

  • Improve the affordability of transit service in the County by reducing fares on all Ride On routes by one half, bringing the cost of most Ride On trips to $1.00. Following the suspension of fare collection during the COVID-19 pandemic, a fare equity study was conducted to identify fare policy options that would produce the greatest and most equitable benefit for County residents. It was found that a $1.00 fare would provide the best balance of benefits and costs, while being simple to communicate and implement and flexible for future changes to the larger regional fare system.

  • Restore Ride On service and Call-N-Ride to pre-pandemic levels.
  • Enhance transit service delivery through a series of system-wide changes to be recommended in the Ride On Reimagined study. This comprehensive study is examining Montgomery County's entire existing and planned transit system, providing the opportunity to guide the future direction of Ride On through data analysis and community engagement. County residents, transit passengers and advocacy groups, community leaders, and other stakeholders will participate in the development of policy recommendations and implementation strategies. The study will address County priorities to improve racial equity and address climate change. A new planning position has been added to assist in the coordination of this study and to implement recommended changes to address current and future needs of the community served by Ride On.


  • Initiate a zero-emission bus fleet transition study to develop concrete strategies to transform the Ride On fleet and achieve the zero-emission fleet targets and greenhouse gas reduction goals outlined in the County's Climate Action Plan. The plan will also contain a program of requirements for a new zero-emission bus operations and maintenance facility. By summer 2022, a draft plan that addresses implementation through 2027 will be completed. The study will be completed by the end of fiscal year 2023.
  • Improve transportation services and address barriers for residents who are disabled, seniors, and individuals with limited incomes. Supported by dedicated revenues from Transportation Network Company fees, Transit Services will increase subsidies for wheelchair accessible taxicabs and provide new grants to nonprofit transportation service partners.
  • Initiate the TravelSmart Ambassador Program, which will use targeted outreach and messaging to educate a variety of audiences on transportation options for all types of trips. This initiative will focus on underserved and vulnerable populations, including non-native English speakers, seniors, and people with disabilities, as well as residents new to the area and suburban residents who often are unaware of how transit and other non-driving options can be effectively used. By advocating for alternatives to driving, this program will help the County achieve its Climate Action Plan goals to double the use of transit and active transportation by 2035 while capitalizing on the substantial investment in existing, new, and future transportation options such as Ride On, bus rapid transit (BRT), the Purple Line, and robust pedestrian and bike infrastructure.
  • Expand the impacts of Transportation Demand Management (TDM) programs in the County to increase the use of transit and other alternatives to driving alone. TDM programs are a key strategy outlined in the County's Climate Action Plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector. Outreach and increased data gathering will be conducted in the White Oak TMD and other previously underserved activity centers in the County. This initiative will increase direct assistance to businesses and their employees, and to residents of multi-unit buildings. Other TDM expansions include installation of parking corrals for e-scooters and e-bikes, increases in the number of adult cycling classes offered, and a web portal to facilitate developer compliance with NextGen TDM requirements.

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Innovations and Productivity Improvements

  • Transit Services has implemented workforce software that enables bus operators to use their Montgomery County ID badge to sign in and out of work. Bus operators may view their work assignment, vehicle assignment, dispatch messages, and relevant traffic detour information. The transit software expedites the sign in and out process as bus operators begin and end their work shifts.

  • A Ride On Ridership dashboard has been added to the MCDOT website. This dashboard reports on a variety of Ride On performance measures including total ridership, weekday/Saturday/Sunday ridership, on-time performance, missed trip rate, and complaint rate.

  • Transit Services is working to identify opportunities to improve Ride On bus operator training through a study to examine current training practices and procedures and compare them to transit industry best practices. The study will develop a series of recommendations to improve bus operator training and safety, both in the field and in the classroom, and to promote transit safety for bus operators and passengers.

Program Descriptions

  Transit Services

Public transit plays a vital role in maintaining the livability of Montgomery County's growing communities, easing commutes for County residents, and reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. The Transit Services program provides Ride On fixed-route bus service, the FLASH limited stop transit service, and the FLEX on demand zone-based service in...

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  Transit Services General Administration

The General Administration program provides executive direction and support functions for Transit Services programs that include Ride On operations and planning, human resources, information technology, budget/grant/fiscal management/procurement services, and special transportation programs to increase mobility and promote the economic growth and stability of the County. ...

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  Community Mobility Services

The Community Mobility Services program provides a wide range of transportation-related services and options for County residents and commuters. The program includes components to inform people about services available, enabling them to make the best choices for their needs; programs to reduce the cost of using those options; and programs...

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Budget Trends
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Program Contacts

Contact Kevin Sanders of the Division of Transit Services at 240.777.5807 or Gary Nalven of the Office of Management and Budget at 240.777.2779 for more information regarding this department's operating budget.

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Budget Summary
TitleActual
FY21
Budget
FY22
Estimate
FY22
Approved
FY23
%Chg
Bud/App
MASS TRANSIT
EXPENDITURES
Salaries and Wages59625684.0064357619.00 69145610.00 76346505.0018.6
Employee Benefits18944130.0020658017.00 19231156.00 21198741.002.6
Mass Transit Personnel Costs78569814.0085015636.00 88376766.00 97545246.0014.7
Operating Expenses58045859.0064308102.00 67972124.00 70178731.009.1
Capital Outlay288356.00111500.00 111500.00 111500.000.0
Mass Transit Expenditures136904029.00149435238.00 156460390.00 167835477.0012.3
PERSONNEL
Full-Time863.00863.00 863.00 854.00-1.0
Part-Time16.0016.00 16.00 32.00100.0
FTEs895.77895.77 895.77 897.510.2
REVENUES
Property Tax153154777.00111358690.00 112392463.00 182853842.0064.2
Taxi Licensing Fees39225.00200000.00 50000.00 80000.00-60.0
Bus Advertising646581.00900000.00 700000.00 700000.00-22.2
Motor Pool Charges/Fees833329.000.00 0.00 0.000.0
Other Charges/Fees2143907.002564453.00 2502722.00 2738805.006.8
Parking Fees754697.00576000.00 828704.00 828704.0043.9
Ride On Fare Revenue9952.0012175785.00 27154.00 9825033.00-19.3
Other Fines/Forfeitures250.000.00 400.00 0.000.0
Parking Fines291380.00418800.00 566335.00 566335.0035.2
State Aid: Call N' Ride379107.00379107.00 379107.00 379107.000.0
State Aid: Damascus Fixed Route303733.00303733.00 303733.00 303733.000.0
State Aid: Ride On63527124.0097167934.00 96637845.00 33360000.00-65.7
Miscellaneous Revenues186292.000.00 2110.00 0.000.0
Recreation Fees971.000.00 965.00 0.000.0
Mass Transit Revenues222271325.00226044502.00 214391538.00 231635559.002.5
 
GRANT FUND - MCG
EXPENDITURES
Salaries and Wages9102775.001320700.00 1320700.00 1328631.000.6
Employee Benefits158776.00301251.00 301251.00 298468.00-0.9
Grant Fund - MCG Personnel Costs9261551.001621951.00 1621951.00 1627099.000.3
Operating Expenses2600720.003475476.00 3475476.00 3487745.000.4
Grant Fund - MCG Expenditures11862271.005097427.00 5097427.00 5114844.000.3
PERSONNEL
Full-Time15.0015.00 15.00 15.000.0
Part-Time0.000.00 0.00 0.000.0
FTEs13.1013.10 13.10 13.100.0
REVENUES
Federal Grants8601068.001939693.00 1939693.00 1939693.000.0
State Grants0.003157734.00 3157734.00 3175151.000.6
Grant Fund - MCG Revenues8601068.005097427.00 5097427.00 5114844.000.3
 
DEPARTMENT TOTALS
Total Expenditures148766300.00154532665.00 161557817.00 172950321.0011.9
Total Full-Time Positions878.00878.00 878.00 869.00-1.0
Total Part-Time Positions16.0016.00 16.00 32.00100.0
Total FTEs908.87908.87 908.87 910.610.2
Total Revenues230872393.00231141929.00 219488965.00 236750403.002.4
FY23 Approved Changes
TitleExpendituresFTEs
MASS TRANSIT
FY22 ORIGINAL APPROPRIATION149435238895.77
Changes (with service impacts)
Enhance: Wheelchair Accessible Taxicab Subsidies [Community Mobility Services]21533130.00
Enhance: Transit Service Return to Pre-COVID-19 Levels [Transit Services]17359270.00
Add: Capital and Operating Grant Programs for Transportation Services Nonprofits [Community Mobility Services]8000000.00
Enhance: Call-N-Ride Service Return to Pre-COVID-19 Levels [Community Mobility Services]4000000.00
Enhance: Support of Transportation Management District Programs [Community Mobility Services]2610000.00
Enhance: WMATA Payment for Kids Ride Free Program Return to Pre-COVID-19 Levels [Transit Services]1950000.00
Enhance: Call-N-Ride Eligibility Expansion [Community Mobility Services]1500000.00
Add: Mid-Year Creation of Climate Change Officer Position [Community Mobility Services]1494070.74
Add: TravelSmart Ambassador Program [Community Mobility Services]1000001.00
Enhance: Service Planning Position [Transit Services]881101.00
Enhance: Call-N-Ride Provider Payments [Community Mobility Services]792860.00
Enhance: Part-Time Operator Positions [Transit Services]664000.00
Other Adjustments (with no service impacts)
Increase Cost: Transit Bus Operator and Coordinator Salary Schedule Adjustment [Transit Services]94000000.00
Increase Cost: Annualization of FY22 Compensation Increases18142350.00
Increase Cost: FY23 Compensation Adjustment16923410.00
Increase Cost: Motor Pool Adjustment9216850.00
Increase Cost: Risk Management Adjustment6156720.00
Increase Cost: Staffing Adjustment (Taxi Services) [Community Mobility Services]1010421.00
Increase Cost: Commuter Survey For Employers & Residents [Community Mobility Services]1000000.00
Increase Cost: Ride On Bus Stop Trash Removal Contract Escalation [Transit Services]755250.00
Increase Cost: Bus Lot Washdown Contract Escalation [Transit Services]583460.00
Increase Cost: Eight Percent Inflationary Increase to Non-Profit Service Provider Contracts534480.00
Increase Cost: Routes & Scheduling Software Contract Escalation [Transit Services]224320.00
Increase Cost: Printing and Mail Adjustment152370.00
Increase Cost: Capital Bikeshare Advertising Brokerage Sponsorship [Community Mobility Services]100000.00
Increase Cost: TRiPS Commuter Store Contract Escalation [Community Mobility Services]69000.00
Increase Cost: Contract Escalation: Bethesda TMD [Community Mobility Services]62100.00
Increase Cost: Contract Escalation: North Bethesda TMD [Community Mobility Services]60000.00
Re-align: Operating Support for Mobile TRiPS Store via Elimination of Long Term Vacant Positions [Community Mobility Services]0-2.00
Re-align: Staffing Adjustments to Grant Fund (Commuter Services) [Community Mobility Services]-187220.00
Decrease Cost: TMD Biennial Reports [Community Mobility Services]-200000.00
Decrease Cost: Triennial Survey [Transit Services]-3000000.00
Decrease Cost: Annualization of FY22 Personnel Costs-3068230.00
Decrease Cost: Retirement Adjustment-3567320.00
Decrease Cost: Elimination of One-Time Items Approved in FY22-16750000.00
FY23 APPROVED167835477897.51
 
GRANT FUND - MCG
FY22 ORIGINAL APPROPRIATION509742713.10
Other Adjustments (with no service impacts)
Re-align: Staffing Adjustment from Mass Transit Fund (Medicaid) [Community Mobility Services]187220.00
Increase Cost: Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments Grant Increase [Community Mobility Services]174160.00
Decrease Cost: Annualization of FY22 Personnel Costs-187210.00
FY23 APPROVED511484413.10
Program Summary
Program NameFY22 APPR
Expenditures
FY22 APPR
FTEs
FY23 APPR
Expenditures
FY23 APPR
FTEs
Community Mobility Services1267537834.091706250534.83
Transit Services138540939868.78153884527869.78
Transit Services General Administration33163486.0020032896.00
Total154532665908.87172950321910.61
Charges to Other Departments
Charged DepartmentCharged FundFY22
Total$
FY22
FTES
FY23
Total$
FY23
FTES
MASS TRANSIT
Health and Human ServicesGeneral Fund2826940.002826940.00
Funding Parameter Items ($000s)
TitleFY23FY24FY25FY26FY27FY28
MASS TRANSIT
EXPENDITURES
FY23 Approved167835.000000167835.000000167835.000000167835.000000167835.000000167835.000000
No inflation or compensation change is included in outyear projections.
Annualization of Positions Approved in FY230.00000079.00000079.00000079.00000079.00000079.000000
New positions in the FY23 Transit Services budget are assumed to be filled three to six months after the fiscal year begins. Therefore, the above amounts reflect annualization of these positions in the outyears.
Transportation Services Improvement Fund Expenditures0.000000295.000000-187.000000-16.000000170.000000376.000000
Expenditures from the Transportation Services Improvement Fund, restricted to programs that improve transportation service for residents who are disabled, seniors, and individuals with limited incomes, will vary from year to year based on projected fund resources.
Labor Contracts0.0000004759.0000004759.0000004759.0000004759.0000004759.000000
These figures represent the estimated annualized cost of general wage adjustments, service increments, and other negotiated items.
Subtotal Expenditures167835.000000172967.000000172485.000000172656.000000172842.000000173048.000000