There are no rate adjustments being proposed for the Steamship Authority’s (SSA) 2022 budget.
Mark Rozum, treasurer and comptroller for the SSA, said during a public information session Friday morning on the proposed 2022 budget that there are no rate hikes proposed, although there are some significant operating expense increases to consider.
Overall operating expenses in the budget come to $119.6 million, a 6.2 percent increase from the prior year’s budget. This leaves the SSA with a net income from operations of $9.1 million.
The largest operating expense change from 2021 to 2022 is in vessel fuel oil costs, with total fuel costs up to almost $2.2 million — a 36.5 percent increase versus 2021.
“We are budgeting $1.81 to $2.49 cents per gallon in 2022, compared to last year where we budgeted $1.75 to $1.88,” Courtney Oliveira, assistant treasurer, said.
Additionally, payroll costs are up $2.1 million in 2022, and maintenance costs are increasing $620,716.
The cost to dry-dock five vessels in 2022 comes out to just over $5 million, and maintenance costs are increasing due to HVAC work in the Vineyard Haven terminal, tents at the Nantucket terminal for the passenger area, pier decking in Oak Bluffs, slip work in Hyannis, and dock repairs in Vineyard Haven.
Almost $3.7 million has been budgeted for these repair and maintenance projects.