For the longest time, I have opined how arguably the biggest culprit for the MTA’s financial woes are the elected officials who will be the first in line for face time to criticize fare hikes, service cuts, system conditions, etc… yet will be the same individuals who continue to raid the funds or not properly provide any. Today’s New York Daily News contains a scathing editorial blaming elected officials for slashing transit funds:
Already the subways are dirtier, and starting today many will be slower in coming. They’ll also be more crowded – as will many buses – at least on those routes on which service has not been eliminated.
This is an outrage. Its perpetrators are the officials who have held sway in Albany, spending ever more billions of dollars yet never properly attending to the delivery of basic, vital services.
Mass transit is the very lifeblood of New York. It should be among the last of the services chosen for sacrifice in tough times – not the very first.
Yet Gov. Paterson, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, Senate Democratic Conference chief John Sampson, Senate Republican Minority Leader Dean Skelos and overwhelming majorities in both houses put subway, bus and commuter rail service at the head of the line for chopping.
That New York is in tough times is no excuse.
MTA revenues from dedicated taxes have plummeted in the national economic downturn. Albany worsened the picture in December by siphoning $143 million from that dwindling money flow to cover the state’s expenses.
Click here for the complete editorial.
I won’t say much as my feelings on the issue have been well documented. However I will say that readers should check out the comment responses to the editorial from two individuals who go off on the New York Daily News among others.
xoxo Transit Blogger