Metra is faced with serious financial problems as it relates to the COVID-19 outbreak.  The local rail agency expects to lose more than 500 million dollars in sales tax and ticket revenue by the end of 2021.  There are some concerns that some riders may not come back once the health crisis is over. Metra Chief Financial Officer Thomas Farmer announced yesterday that ridership may never reach 2019 levels and may take one to three years to do so. Ridership is projected to be down 97 percent in April. Farmer believes the first few months after the state’s stay-at-home order is lifted, some commuters may take advantage of low gas prices and less-congested roads to take cars to work instead of the train.