City spending plans for next year: $37 million approved for the rail

Local News

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell approved the city’s spending plan for the next year.

Budgets of nearly $3 billion dollars for operation and more than $1.1 billion for capital spending were signed today at Honolulu Hale.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell said tax rate increases on resorts and Residential A investment homes will bring more than $31 million extra. He says, “One of the issues that we’re concerned about is the interim opening of rail, coming up in about a year and a half and we want to make sure we have revenue to cover the subsidy, because all mass transit, anywhere in the world that’s public is heavily subsidized, whether is be a bus system or a rail system.”

The mayor said rail operations will cost $37 million for the upcoming partial year and about $80 million for the first full year of interim operations from 2020. 

The bus system gets a $200 million annual subsidy.

As for capital projects, $12 million is designated for Blaisdell demolition. The full $700 million redevelopment plan is not yet budgeted for, and the mayor says it depends in large part on public-private partnership bids to pan out. 

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