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Deucey

DeBlasio: "We're no giving you more money." Cuomo: "Yes you are..."

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https://www.amny.com/transit/mta-funding-state-budget-1.16317913

MTA funding for subways, buses in Cuomo’s budget would force city to pay more, de Blasio admin. says

By Vincent Barone   vin.barone@amny.com

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive budget would dump a bigger-than-ever share of the financial responsibilities for the beleaguered MTA onto New York City, the de Blasio administration said Tuesday.

As budget hearings get under way in Albany, members of de Blasio’s administration said the city would fight legislation proposed in the budget that would require the city to pony up significantly higher funds toward subways and buses while stripping the city’s access to certain property tax revenues by directly funneling that money to the MTA.

“We are objecting strongly to language that was inserted into the budget that would create a new, capital liability, a new capital commitment liability on the part of the city for New York City Transit, which is breaking a long-standing history of how the MTA is funded,” said First Deputy Mayor Dean Fuleihan during a conference call with reporters.

There appear to be three specific legislative actions in the budget that the city takes issue with, in what is the latest back and forth over MTA responsibilities between the mayor and governor who effectively controls the transportation authority.

One proposed piece of legislation in the budget would force the city to fund half of the MTA’s $836 million Subway Action Plan. A second would require the city to “provide in full all funding required to meet the capital needs of the New York City transit authority,” which is comprised of the agency’s subway and bus networks.

That amendment could require about a sevenfold increase in city funding toward MTA transit, based on today’s figures. In the MTA’s current five-year capital plan, the city has pledged $2.5 billion toward the plan, which packs an $18 billion budget for transit projects.

The city has refused for months to give the MTA more money. De Blasio and his staff argue that city residents, workers and businesses already contribute 70 percent of the MTA revenue. They’ve also criticized the governor for MTA budget raids and the agency for what they’ve described as reckless spending and poor prioritization of cosmetic improvements over service-related projects.

The governor’s office deferred comment to the MTA, which held a counter-conference call to dispute the city’s argument.

The de Blasio administration claimed that it had no legal obligation to contribute more than $5 million to the MTA’s capital plans, citing a 1953 state law.

But MTA chairman Joe Lhota said that wasn’t the whole picture. He referenced a 1981 law that created a capital plan review board for the MTA, which says the city is responsible for the system’s capital needs.

The 1981 law “maintained the mayor having the right to agree to any amount that would be used for the New York City Transit Authority — not just up to $5 million, any amount — by virtually having the ultimate say: the right to veto the entire capital plan,” Lhota said.

“If there’s a difference of opinion as to what it says where it says the city of New York is responsible for the capital program,” he continued, “now we’re going to put it in even simpler language than that.”

Despite laws, budget watchdogs said that the city has historically never paid for all capital funding toward transit. Its $2.5 billion capital commitment is actually a record high.

“It’s never worked that way in the past,” said Jamison Dague, the director of infrastructure studies at the Citizens Budget Commission. “[It] would represent a huge increase in the amount of MTA capital funding that would come from the city.”

The third piece of legislation relates to the state more aggressively pursuing what’s known as value capture financing for transit projects — a technique that could generate MTA funding by seizing the value the agency’s projects create for private property owners. The governor’s budget specifically targets projects relating to East Side Access; the redevelopment of Penn Station; 125th Street Metro-North Railroad and some Second Avenue Subway-related work.

Fuleihan slammed the proposal in the budget, which he said would wrest revenue from property taxes away from the city.

“We certainly object to the arbitrary nature of the value capture proposal, which targets — in a way that’s unprecedented for local governments — that targets specific projects in New York City and takes most of what they claim would be a value, and would be determined without any local input by the MTA,” Fuleihan said.

MTA president Patrick Foye assured that there would be local input. “We believe that this is an appropriate effective and . . . progressive way to fund subway capital improvements,” Foye said.

With Sarina Trangle

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This part here puts me on Billy Dee's side:

One proposed piece of legislation in the budget would force the city to fund half of the MTA’s $836 million Subway Action Plan. A second would require the city to “provide in full all funding required to meet the capital needs of the New York City transit authority,” which is comprised of the agency’s subway and bus networks.

NYC ponies up money but gets minority board representation on its own transportation system, while NYS has all the power.

If Billy were smarter or savvier, he'd tie (extra) funding to reforming (MTA)'s charter to the Mayor's office having equal or majority representation.

But as we all are acutely aware...

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20 minutes ago, Deucey said:

This part here puts me on Billy Dee's side:

 

 

NYC ponies up money but gets minority board representation on its own transportation system, while NYS has all the power.

If Billy were smarter or savvier, he'd tie (extra) funding to reforming (MTA)'s charter to the Mayor's office having equal or majority representation.

But as we all are acutely aware...

De Blasio is full of it. He tries to come off as tough as if he is squarely interested in defending the City against the big bad state, but this is him being an immature moron and letting his personal issues get in the way of doing what is needed for the City.  Now I don't think that the City should be forking over half of anything because of what you stated earlier about the lack of representation on the (MTA) board, but that doesn't mean that the City is completely innocent in all of this either, and de Blasio hasn't been willing to fork over a cent to help get the subways turned around in the months that he's been yelling about how the (MTA) is run by the State and Cuomo.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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You know, I can support the city putting up more funding for the subways and buses. What I cannot support is the city footing the entire bill here. If the city's going to pay the whole capital budget, what's the point of it being tied into the state-run MTA? There doesn't look like there would be any incentive to remaining under the MTA umbrella.

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13 minutes ago, Lance said:

You know, I can support the city putting up more funding for the subways and buses. What I cannot support is the city footing the entire bill here. If the city's going to pay the whole capital budget, what's the point of it being tied into the state-run MTA? There doesn't look like there would be any incentive to remaining under the MTA umbrella.

Bingo! Why are people in Albany (Most that don't even use the subway) making decisions that affect millions downstate? We should just run the show altogether.

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48 minutes ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

De Blasio is full of it. He tries to come off as tough as if he is squarely interested in defending the City against the big bad state, but this is him being an immature moron and letting his personal issues get in the way of doing what is needed for the City.  Now I don't think that the City should be forking over half of anything because of what you stated earlier about the lack of representation on the (MTA) board, but that doesn't mean that the City is completely innocent in all of this either, and de Blasio hasn't been willing to fork over a cent to help get the subways turned around in the months that he's been yelling about how the (MTA) is run by the State and Cuomo.

Give us full control what's the point of a middleman if that's the case!

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9 minutes ago, BreeddekalbL said:

i agree the (MTA) is a state agency does prince andrew have an ulterior motive?

He's trying to get the (MTA) out of his portfolio of responsibility while Billy's trying to keep it out of his.

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11 minutes ago, RailRunRob said:

Bingo! Why are people in Albany (Most that don't even use the subway) making decisions that affect millions downstate? We should just run the show altogether.

Why? Because the City went bankrupt years ago and couldn't run the subways because it couldn't afford to, so the State took over, that's why.  lol People have very limited memories here.  The City is doing well financially now, but it has gone through ups and downs. All it takes is Wall Street tanking and tourism not doing so well, and the City isn't looking oh so pretty and so flush with cash. They'd go crying to the State again to rescue it, so if the City can handle its own business then it should take control and do what it needs to do.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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29 minutes ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

Why? Because when the City went bankrupt years ago and couldn't run the subways because it couldn't afford to, so the State took over, that's why.  lol People have very limited memories here.  The City is doing well financially now, but it has gone through ups and downs. All it takes is Wall Street tanking and tourism not doing so well, and the City isn't looking oh so pretty and so flush with cash. They'd go crying to the State again to rescue it, so if the City can handle its own business then it should take control and do what it needs to do.

NYC has a GDP of 1.5 Trillion  Canada outputs the same so a City outputting what some nations do.. more in some cases... we could handle it! it's not 1967.

Edited by RailRunRob

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39 minutes ago, Deucey said:

He's trying to get the (MTA) out of his portfolio of responsibility while Billy's trying to keep it out of his.

 

Man, should a neutral party be in control?  Isn't the MTA a for profit?

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10 minutes ago, RailRunRob said:

NYC has a GDP of 1.5 Trillion  Canada outputs the same so a City outputting what some nations do.. more in some cases... we could handle it! it's not 1967.

GDP has nothing to do with actual budgets.  

I'll reference the quote below:

Quote

Had the law been in effect in 2015, when the state and city were negotiating the MTA's current, roughly $30 billion, five-year capital plan, the city would have been on the hook for at least $16.5 billion, according to Dague, rather than the $2.5 billion it committed to. That’s more than the city’s entire $13.1 billion capital budget for the 2019 fiscal year.

https://www.politico.com/states/new-york/albany/story/2018/01/16/cuomos-mta-budget-maneuvers-appear-to-target-city-hall-192063

If the City is swimming in so much money, then de Blasio should no problem forking over monies to aid the State in repairing the subways.

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2 minutes ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

GDP has nothing to do with actual budgets.  

I'll reference the quote below:

https://www.politico.com/states/new-york/albany/story/2018/01/16/cuomos-mta-budget-maneuvers-appear-to-target-city-hall-192063

If the City is swimming in so much money, then de Blasio should no problem forking over monies to aid the State in repairing the subways.

Why would I pay if I don't have control?  If I'm going to pay the cost I need to be the boss! That doesn't make sense.

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10 minutes ago, RailRunRob said:

 

Man, should a neutral party be in control?  Isn't the MTA a for profit?

If it were, it would've been bankrupt long ago.

1 minute ago, RailRunRob said:

Why would I pay if I don't have control?  If I'm going to pay the cost I need to be the boss! That doesn't make sense.

The City already subsidizes the (MTA) in some capacity and has been for years, so I don't know why you're acting like this is such a big deal all of a sudden.  

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18 minutes ago, RailRunRob said:

 

Man, should a neutral party be in control?  Isn't the MTA a for profit?

Non-profits are for profit, otherwise they'd go out of business.

All "For profit" means is that revenues in excess of expenses are paid to shareholders instead of reinvested into the organization.

What is needed is an actual NYS transit policy where NYS has the same responsibilities and obligations toward other transit systems in the state as it (pretends to have/) has to (MTA)/NYCTA. Some states do this by grants or statutory subsidy and have minimal representation on the board (less than 20%) if the transit authority board isn't elected by the public.

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24 minutes ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

If it were, it would've been bankrupt long ago.

The City already subsidizes the (MTA) in some capacity and has been for years, so I don't know why you're acting like this is such a big deal all of a sudden.  

What are the subsidizes 10-15%? When we start talking 50/50 the control needs to be split 50/50.  I don't understand why the City doesn't control its own network.  Part of the issues no one's accountable if the Mayor's in control then we know who to turn the fire when things aren't getting done and exactly where to go to get accountability. NYC has to account for 50-60% of the state Revenue have to start pulling rank.

Edited by RailRunRob

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The city should zero out MTA funding until they get a greater say in the operation of the subway. 
Massive infrastructure failings while Cuomo spends TA money like a drunk sailor on bridge lights and cosmetic upgrades to stations. 

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Just now, RailRunRob said:

What are the subsidizes 10-15%? When we start talking 50/50 the control needs to be split 50/50.  I don't understand why the City doesn't control its own network.  Part of the issues no one's accountable if the Mayor's in control then we know who to turn the fire when things aren't getting done and exactly where to go to get accountably 

I already explained why earlier. The City WAS in complete control and couldn't run the subways because it went bankrupt.  It ceded control to the State and it's been that way ever since.  It's easy to say that City can do it again now because of the good financial times, but it wasn't that long ago that City was struggling and had to make cuts to various city services.  

The City currently runs several large agencies quite poorly, with ongoing spikes in costs, mismanagement and lies. I'm no lover of the State, but one has to be quite gullible to believe that the City could run the (MTA) so much better.

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6 minutes ago, Art Vandelay said:

The city should zero out MTA funding until they get a greater say in the operation of the subway. 
Massive infrastructure failings while Cuomo spends TA money like a drunk sailor on bridge lights and cosmetic upgrades to stations. 

As if the subway stations don't need the cosmetic upgrades? Please.  Yes signals are important, but a lot of the stations being rehabbed were reaching dangerous levels in terms of having unsafe staircases, platforms and the like, not to mention falling concrete... But those aren't important until someone is injured or worse of course.

One of the closest stations to me (242nd and Broadway) finally got a rehab and God did it need it.  The staircases felt like they were going to collapse any minute, and none of the vending machines worked.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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3 minutes ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

I already explained why earlier. The City WAS in complete control and couldn't run the subways because it went bankrupt.  It ceded control to the State and it's been that way ever since.  It's easy to say that City can do it again now because of the good financial times, but it wasn't that long ago that City was struggling and had to make cuts to various city services.  

The City currently runs several large agencies quite poorly, with ongoing spikes in costs, mismanagement and lies. I'm no lover of the State, but one has to be quite gullible to believe that the City could run the (MTA) so much better.

That's why I'd make (MTA) or at least NYCTA a special district under state law with powers to tax and board members elected by NYCers directly, or indirectly by making Borough Presidents and County Executives ex-officio board members (with the Mayor and governor appointing one non-voting member each).

Political accountability is needed for an organization whose remit significantly affects the national and global economy is.

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4 minutes ago, Deucey said:

That's why I'd make (MTA) or at least NYCTA a special district under state law with powers to tax and board members elected by NYCers directly, or indirectly by making Borough Presidents and County Executives ex-officio board members (with the Mayor and governor appointing one non-voting member each).

Political accountability is needed for an organization whose remit significantly affects the national and global economy is.

If we really think the City can run the (MTA) just look at the mess with NYCHA with the mayor still backing the chair after she lied under oath to the City Council about mismanagement, monies spent with nothing to show for it and so on.  Cuomo is no saint by any means, but the City does its own wasting of money as well regularly. In other words, I don't trust de Blasio to do such a stellar job.

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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3 minutes ago, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

As if the subway stations don't need the cosmetic upgrades? Please.  Yes signals are important, but a lot of the stations being rehabbed were reaching dangerous levels in terms of having unsafe staircases, platforms and the like, not to mention falling concrete... But those aren't important until someone is injured or worse of course.

One of the closest stations to me (242nd and Broadway) finally got a rehab and God did it need it.  The staircases felt like they were going to collapse any minute, and none of the vending machines worked.

242nd was not part of the program I am referring to. 

None of the subway stations being redone under the "Enhanced Station Initiative" had any such issues. 

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Just now, Via Garibaldi 8 said:

If we really think the City can run the (MTA) just look at the mess with NYCHA with the mayor still backing the chair after she lied under oath about mismanagement, monies spent with nothing to show for it and so on.  Cuomo is no saint by any means, but the City does its own wasting of money as well regularly. 

But a special district wouldn't be the City or State. It'd be a separate corporation with a narrow remit and independent of City Hall and Albany. Like TBTA before (MTA) got a hold of it, but with elected officials instead of appointees.

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1 minute ago, Art Vandelay said:

242nd was not part of the program I am referring to. 

None of the subway stations being redone under the "Enhanced Station Initiative" had any such issues. 

Even so I see nothing wrong with redoing the stations if they can be done quickly at a reasonable cost.  I've seen the stations rehabbed so far and I agree with them being done as the previous versions were hideous.  What I don't agree with is redoing stations and not up keeping them because that is a waste of money.  The cosmetic upgrades included better lighting, better exits and entrances and an overall better experience for the paying customer.  The paying public should see some station rehabs for what they are paying, not just having all of the money go to signals.  I for one DO want to know when my train is coming and I'd like to do it in a station that looks like it's part of the 21st century and not stuck in the 1960s and filthy. 

I look at these cosmetic upgrades as a form of marketing because that's exactly what it is.  

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2 minutes ago, Deucey said:

But a special district wouldn't be the City or State. It'd be a separate corporation with a narrow remit and independent of City Hall and Albany. Like TBTA before (MTA) got a hold of it, but with elected officials instead of appointees.

I think you'd have to do something like that because otherwise we'd have more of the same BS, just with de Blasio appointing people he knows, giving them bloated salaries and raises for doing nothing and then defending them when they've been shown not to do their job effectively.

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