Jump to content
Attention: In order to reply to messages, create topics, have access to other features of the community you must sign up for an account.
Sign in to follow this  
Shortline Bus

Not eveyrone is happy with MTA Bailout: Westchester and other County bosses angry

Recommended Posts

Not eveyone who uses the MTA is happy. Most Suburbrian train riders in Westchester/Rockland and the lower Hudson River Valley who use Metro North are unhappy at the bailout, especially County Executives at the payroll taxes. Here the Westchester/Rockland Journal News story.

 

Deal struck on MTA rescue

By Ken Valenti and Cara Matthews • klvalent@lohud.com • Wednesday May 6, 2009

 

 

The state Legislature and Gov. David Paterson announced yesterday that they reached a deal on the bailout of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority that would prevent large fare increases and service cuts.

 

 

 

The plan would raise about $2.26 billion a year to help the troubled agency. The bulk of the money - $1.5 billion - would be collected from a payroll tax in the 12 counties served by the MTA. The rest would come from a 10 percent fare increase this year and other fees. Lawmakers are expected to vote on the proposal today.

 

"Last week, when the MTA announced that there would be an additional $600 million deficit that had to be addressed, it became clear to me that this situation was rapidly deteriorating and we were facing a devastating situation if we did not act," Paterson said.

 

Earlier yesterday, county executives in the Lower Hudson Valley assailed the new payroll tax at the center of the rescue plan for the MTA. A couple of them have even hinted at a lawsuit or leaving the MTA network altogether on the payroll tax issue.

 

Last night, the Rockland County Legislature unanimously adopted a resolution to oppose the payroll tax and withdraw from the MTA, Chairwoman Harriet Cornell said.

 

Legislator Alden Wolfe, D-Suffern, said the Legislature wanted to make a "very strong statement."

 

"If we get permission to withdraw, we'll do an analysis of what we're actually getting from the MTA. We're tired of getting the short end of the stick," he said.

 

Rockland County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef the most angry of all interviewed said his county should consider legal action or even breaking away from the MTA.

 

"For Rockland County, it's insult upon insult, and I think discussions about whether we stay with MTA or find a new way to provide regional transportation is now in order," said Vanderhoef, a Republican. "We dont even have a direct 1-train ride to Midtown and yet we are taxed this heavily.'

 

MTA's Metro-North Railroad contracts with NJ Transit to provide service in Rockland with riders transfering in New Jersey to get to Manhattan. While a few others drive across the Tappan Zee Bridge and catch a Metro North train at Tarrytown for Grand Central service.

 

The deal rached last night has changed from an earlier proposal in that employers in every county would be charged 34 cents for every $100 of payroll. Putnam, Dutchess and Orange counties originally were going to pay 25 cents for every $100 of payroll because they are farther from the MTA's hub in New York City.

 

Paterson said that was changed in an effort to make the plan as uniform as possible and defuse any arguments on whether one county had a more difficult situation than another.

 

 

 

The agreement calls for a 10 percent fare increase now, meaning $2.25 for the subway and buses, followed by additional increases of 7.5 percent in both 2011 and 2013. The original fare increase proposed by state officials was 8 percent.

 

Another change is that a portion of the money raised will allow the MTA to preserve its $6.5 billion capital plan through 2011. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, yesterday asked that the plan include some capital funding, and the proposal was revised to include this. "We believe we have rescued this system from the brink of abyss," he said.

 

Westchester County Executive Andrew Spano, a Democrat, held a news conference yesterday to reiterate his objection to the idea of charging all employers the payroll tax, including local governments, nonprofits and hospitals. Spano believed the payroll tax should have not included nonprofits such as schools and hospitals. He said the problem was inefficiencies in the MTA.

 

"When you bail out an inefficient agency, you get more inefficiencies," he said, adding that a new tax would make it more difficult to lure businesses to Westchester.

 

Putnam Deputy County Executive John Tully said it was unfair to tax Putnam businesses, arguing that they don't benefit from MTA services. He also noted that Putnam commuters pay higher fares than those in some other counties because their stations are farther from New York City.

 

The MTA is more than $1.8 billion in debt and needs help from the state to avoid a fare increase of 25 percent or more and service cuts next month. The transit system serves New York City, Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, Dutchess and Orange counties and Long Island.

 

Lawmakers will have to return later this year to vote on a statewide capital plan for roads and bridges. Paterson said economists believe the credit markets will be more open in the third and fourth quarters of the year than they are now, so it will be a better time to work on a statewide plan.

 

Supporters of the payroll tax idea said the entire region benefits from MTA services, which include New York City subways and buses, Metro-North Railroad and Long Island Rail Road.

 

The MTA bailout plan would increase other taxes and fees in the 12-county region, including:

 

- Boosting the auto-rental tax from 6 percent to 11 percent.

 

- Placing a $25 fee on motor vehicle registration and raising the fee for a driver's license by 25 percent.

 

- Putting a 50-cent surcharge on taxi rides in New York City and the suburbs, down from $1 in the state Senate's original plan.

 

The fare increases on Metro-North and the MTA services is expected to take effect by no later than July.

 

c)2009 Journal News, Inc.

 

Any reactions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The legislature would never be able to make everyone happy. But with that being said this plan is horrible. The MTA will continue to wast money at a staggering pace with a very inefficient management structure.

 

I predict that the MTA is crying for more money within 3 months!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Legislator Alden Wolfe, D-Suffern, said the Legislature wanted to make a "very strong statement."

 

"If we get permission to withdraw, we'll do an analysis of what we're actually getting from the MTA. We're tired of getting the short end of the stick," he said.

 

*Scoffs*

 

They're getting the short end of the stick, huh? They don't have to deal with all the BS we have here with the subway, now do they?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As someone raised in Brooklyn and now living 'upstate' in this area, i think the Spano comment of non profits like schools hosptials, etc not being taxed is a fair one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The agreement calls for a 10 percent fare increase now, meaning $2.25 for the subway and buses.....

 

I would love to know what calculator they are using. Last time I checked, 10% of $2.00 is $.20 meaning a "true" 10% hike would only be $2.20. $2.25 is a 12.5% hike.

 

If they were to decrease the fares 10% from $2.25, then it would be closer to $2.00.

Edited by Truckie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would love to know what calculator they are using. Last time I checked, 10% of $2.00 is $.20 meaning a "true" 10% hike would only be $2.20. $2.25 is a 12.5% hike.

 

If they were to decrease the fares 10% from $2.25, then it would be $2.00.

 

Pretty sure they said the machines can only be programmed in $.25 increments.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

boo hoo, big deal. everyone pays their fair share with this plan. if these residents dislike paying for something that is provided to them at all times, get out of new york or leave the MTA.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
*Scoffs*

 

They're getting the short end of the stick, huh? They don't have to deal with all the BS we have here with the subway, now do they?

 

Yes they do, cause alot of those who get off of MNRR, LIRR, or even NJT (if coming from Rockland, or Orange counties), still transfer to the subway at Penn, or Grand Central.......

 

boo hoo, big deal. everyone pays their fair share with this plan. if these residents dislike paying for something that is provided to them at all times, get out of new york or leave the MTA.

 

It is in NYC, outside of NYC it isn't. Some LIRR service runs all night, but MNRR doesn't. MTA doesn't have bus routes in Westchester, Rockland, Dutchess, Orange, or Putnam counties. We get railroad service, that is it. But then again lots of people go to the city, and use the all day service there. So true as it is, we don't have all MTA services here, we do benefit when working or partying in the city. Westchester got more riders on their Bee-Line system with MetroCard, so we really shouldn't complain. Few more bus operators got hired, so there was one benefit......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Pretty sure they said the machines can only be programmed in $.25 increments.

Now according to the new fare hike, senior citizens and passengers with disabilities will have to pay $1.10. Let's say they want 2 rides ($2.20), how will it be done via the MVM?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
boo hoo, big deal. everyone pays their fair share with this plan. if these residents dislike paying for something that is provided to them at all times, get out of new york or leave the MTA.

 

 

Rockland County is planning on withdrawing from the MTA. They hardly receive any rail service at all. The 5 stations in Rockland probably have as much ridership combined as White Plains.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Now according to the new fare hike, senior citizens and passengers with disabilities will have to pay $1.10. Let's say they want 2 rides ($2.20), how will it be done via the MVM?

 

Make em pay $1.25

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Oh I see, so they're going to have 15 cents extra per ride.

 

I wasn't posting a fact, just my opinion. The actual policy is as follows:

 

The base fare for Reduced Fare customers will be $1.10.

 

* Reduced Fare customers who do not have a Reduced Fare MetroCard pay $2.25 at a subway station booth for a round trip.

 

** Reduced Fare is not available during rush hours 6-10 AM and 3-7 PM.

 

Fare collection will be implemented at SIR Tompkinsville station upon installation of a fare control area.

 

In addition, buses operated by MTA Bus will begin operating under policies consistent with those of New York City Transit.

 

* Elimination of student reduced fares on all MTA Bus express service

* Change of MTA Bus weekday off-peak eligibility period to begin at 10 a.m. (instead of 9 a.m.) for discounted fares for senior citizens and disabled customers on Northeast Bronx express bus service

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I wasn't posting a fact, just my opinion. The actual policy is as follows:

 

The base fare for Reduced Fare customers will be $1.10.

 

* Reduced Fare customers who do not have a Reduced Fare MetroCard pay $2.25 at a subway station booth for a round trip.

 

** Reduced Fare is not available during rush hours 6-10 AM and 3-7 PM.

 

Fare collection will be implemented at SIR Tompkinsville station upon installation of a fare control area.

 

In addition, buses operated by MTA Bus will begin operating under policies consistent with those of New York City Transit.

 

* Elimination of student reduced fares on all MTA Bus express service

* Change of MTA Bus weekday off-peak eligibility period to begin at 10 a.m. (instead of 9 a.m.) for discounted fares for senior citizens and disabled customers on Northeast Bronx express bus service

Yeah I saw the hike facts already, since I posted them on here yesterday.

IMO, now that the MTA mentions it, I think fare collection should be expanded throughout the SIR system. I don't expect turnstiles though, maybe POP?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.