The STM tables its financial report for 2005
Montreal, 1 May, 2006 - At the last public meeting of its board of directors, the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) tabled its financial report for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2005.
“We are pleased to announce that the STM realized a surplus of $1.0 million in its routine operations and has slightly increased ridership in 2005,” explained Claude Trudel, chairman of the board. “We feel this is a remarkable performance, considering the difficult financial context we find ourselves in, rocketing fuel costs, and substantial investments in Paratransit service.” The surplus was used to reduced the deficit accumulated by December 31, 2004, from $ 6.3 M to $ 5.3 M by the end of the 2005 fiscal year.
This $ 1.0 M surplus is indeed good news, in light of the fact that the STM had started off 2005 with a $ 19.2 M shortage, as a result of not having the new financial framework needed by the public transit companies in Québec and expected by the STM when it prepared its budget. The shortage was made up for by additional contributions of $ 10.8 M and $ 8.2 M by the government of Québec and the City of Montréal respectively.
Despite the events that marked the first half of the year, including strikes by students and the hockey league, ridership nudged slightly up by 0.25% over 2004. The STM also observed a shift in its fare sales, from single tickets and weekly CAM Hebdo passes to monthly CAM passes, an indication of stronger customer loyalty. However, that same shift is also partly responsible for the decrease in STM fare revenue, representing $5.4 M of the revenues expected in that year’s budget. That deficit was largely covered by a $4.3 M increase in other operating revenues.
Moreover, the STM injected a further $3.3 M in its Paratransit service to meet the 11.5% increase in transportation provided during the year.
Other factors such as the spike in the price of fuel also had an impact on expenditures, leading to $4.4 M in additional expenses for 2005 in comparison to the budget.
Investment expenditures rose to $204.7 M and were mainly related to bus purchases ($36.4 M), to developing the métro’s R�no-Syst�mes programme ($95.4 M), and to implementing the fare sales and collection system ($34.0 M).
At December 31, 2005, the STM was committed to its suppliers for contracts totalling $299.6 M. These major sums demonstrate the scale of the investments required to modernize the Société’s infrastructure and equipment.
“These results are a reflection of the STM’s sound business practices and of its efforts to lower costs. They also show the corporation’s willingness to ensure a better future for the community through public transit,” added Mr. Trudel.
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