The bleak picture of the MTA’s finances is news to no one at this point. Riders should expect to have to shoulder the majority of the burden that the MTA is under due to the inept actions of former leaders such as Gov. Pataki & MTA Chairman Peter Kalikow among other people & actions. An editorial that will appear in today’s edition talks about how the city & state are treating the straphangers unfairly due to the city & state leaving the MTA hung out to dry in the funding department:
Heaven help you if you are among the New Yorkers who own a home, buy clothing, hold a job and rely on mass transit. You are going to pay and pay and pay and pay still more because the state and city say they need you to pay and pay and pay still more.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority Monday joined the roster of governmental bankrupts with a warning that, barring a huge infusion of cash, it will be forced to boost fares on subways, buses and commuter railroads next year – while severely cutting service.
Paying more and getting less has become New York’s recurring nightmare as Wall Street tax revenue has shriveled in the global financial crisis.
Last week, Mayor Bloomberg called for canceling real estate tax breaks along with hiking the income tax and sales taxes on clothing. Next week, Gov. Paterson is to propose the first in a series of mammoth budget cuts that would slash aid for everything from schools to hospitals.
And now, the economic downturn that cut the legs out from under the state and city has pushed the MTA’s already shaky finances into an abyss.
In July, the agency proposed an 8% rise in the fare for next year to balance the books. That was bad enough, but it wasn’t nearly as painful as the increase that’s in the offing. A hike of 20% is well within the realm of possibility.
Working- and middle-class New Yorkers cannot withstand a hit of that magnitude on top of getting squeezed from every other direction. Nor can the city afford to let deteriorating mass transit drag down the quality of life and further damage the region’s economic health.
Click here for the complete editorial.
I’m exhausted right now as I type this. Lets just say I feel the editorial is very accurate & helps paint part of the bleak picture that is the MTA & its finances.
xoxo Transit Blogger