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Patrick: Unused Snow Removal Money Could Go To Cash-Strapped MBTA

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BOSTON (CBS) – Mother Nature may be helping out the MBTA.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Doug Cope reports


Governor Deval Patrick says it may be possible to use the nearly $40 million surplus in the state’s snow and ice removal budget to help limit service cuts proposed by the cash-strapped agency.

The governor says if the weather holds up, the money could be part of a one-year fix.

Michael Widmer of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation says it’s not a perfect idea, but something we should look into.

“Given New England winters, next year we may budget $50 million for snow and ice and have a horrible winter and need $100 million. So, there are downsides to using this money, of course. But given the hand that the state and the T are being dealt, I think it’s worth at least serious consideration,” he told WBZ NewsRadio 1030 Friday.

Patrick says a permanent fix is still needed at the MBTA, and he’s looking at ways to achieve that goal.

The MBTA is trying to close a $161 million budget deficit this year.

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