DRBA Commission Adopts 2021 Operating Budget
Proposed spending reduced by nearly 2%; Maintains Fiscal Discipline
NEW CASTLE, Del. – Today, the Delaware River and Bay Authority (DRBA) Commission approved Resolution 20-47, which established an operating budget of $78,965,292 for the Delaware Memorial Bridge, the Cape May - Lewes Ferry, Food Services, Forts Ferry Crossing, Police and Administration. The Commissioners also authorized a budget of $8,568,366 to operate the Authority’s five regional airports in New Jersey and Delaware and $627,656 for other facilities operated by the agency. The Authority’s 2021 Operating Budget total of $88.2 million represents a decrease of nearly 2%, or a $1.7 million reduction compared to its current FY2020 Budget of $89.9 million. The board action took place at the bi-state agency’s monthly meeting held electronically via video teleconference.
According to the Authority’s Chief Financial Officer Victor Ferzetti, the COVID – 19 pandemic had a significant negative impact on the agency’s revenue expectations. “With reduce traffic and revenues at the Delaware Memorial Bridge and Cape May – Lewes Ferry, the Authority revenues are down more than $26 million,” Ferzetti said. “While some improvement is expected in 2021, our revenue projections for the upcoming year are still more than $11 million below pre-COVID forecasts. Working diligently, line-by-line with directors and managers, we were able to produce a cost effective, responsible budget that provides for the essential operation of our regional transportation network.”
Mr. Ferzetti indicated that significant cost savings are anticipated in the areas of vessel fuel ($807,000); contract services ($309,000); marketing and advertising ($280,000); operating supplies ($250,000); and food & retail supplies ($200,000).
In 2021, the DRBA is forecast to generate about $164 million in revenue and will make debt service payments of nearly $32 million. Nearly 80 percent of the Authority’s revenues are derived from tolls paid at the Delaware Memorial Bridge.
About the Delaware River and Bay Authority
The DRBA, a bi-state governmental agency created by Compact in 1962, owns and operates the Delaware Memorial Bridge, the Cape May- Lewes Ferry, and the Forts Ferry Crossing. The DRBA also manages corporate and aviation properties through its economic development powers - two airports in New Jersey (Millville Airport and Cape May Airport) and three in Delaware (New Castle Airport, Civil Air Terminal and Delaware Airpark). All DRBA operating revenues are generated through the bridge, ferry and airport facilities. For more information, visit www.drba.net.