Taxpayers lost nearly a billion dollars over the last decade on food and beverages supplied by Amtrak, the Washington Examiner reported.
According to Rep. John Mica (R-FL), it costs passengers $9.50 to buy a cheeseburger and $2.00 for a Pepsi, but the cost to taxpayers is $16.15 and $3.40, respectively. That is because Amtrak managed to spend $1.70 for every dollar it received in revenue on food services, which amounted to an $833.8 million dollar loss.
The Examiner notes that the food service, by law, must break even but it lost $84 million last year alone. As Mica noted, because Amtrak’s food and beverage operation has 1,234 employees, the food and beverage operation’s loss averaged to $68,476 per employee.
But Amtrak President Joe Boardman said things were even worse in the past and that last year’s $84 million loss was actually an improvement by 10 cents on the dollar over previous years.