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The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is considering laying off workers to close a potential $110 million deficit in fiscal year 2017, which began July 1. Declining sales tax revenue, which is expected to generate $32 million less than originally anticipated, is partly to blame for the shortfall, local media reported. Reducing the agency's workforce is one option for closing the gap. Currently, wages and benefits make up 75 percent of MBTA's costs.The agency employs 6,500 workers and could reduce that number by 300, news station WWLP reported. The layoffs could lead to $37.5 million in savings.In April, agency officials anticipated that higher sales tax revenue would help close an $80 million budget deficit. However, sales tax projections have since dropped, exacerbating MBTA's fiscal problems.
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