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Posted: September 27, 2011 10:36 a.m.

To run MARTA needs $2.3B during decade

ATLANTA (AP) - The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority's chief executive says MARTA faces $2.3 billion in maintenance needs in the next decade.

MARTA chief Beverly Scott told state lawmakers on Monday that it's not known how those maintenance needs will be funded. She says if voters reject a regional transportation tax, the unfunded maintenance needs will rise.

Voters will decide next year whether to raise their sales tax to fund transportation projects

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports ( ) Rep. Mike Jacobs, R-Atlanta, says a consensus is building that a major change is needed in MARTA funding.

State law says only 50 percent of the money raised by the 1-cent sales tax now paid in Fulton and DeKalb counties can be used for MARTA operations. The remaining 50 percent must go to capital expenses.

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