Transit Ideas for Governor Spitzer
December 4th, 2006

Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers gives incoming Governor Eliot Spitzer a plan for mass transit in the New York Times:

* Don’t appoint “political cronies” to the Metropolitan Transportation Board, and solve the contract dispute that caused last winter’s strike.
* Keep fares at their current level, while looking for ways for “corporations, consumers, automobile drivers and other stakeholders” to contribute revenue to a system that, after all, benefits them as well.
* Build the Second Avenue Subway and a connection between the Long Island Railroad and Grand Central.
* Improve the bus system.
* Keep a closer eye on the scandal-prone MTA.
* Ride the subway a lot.

By on December 4, 2006, 11:40 am
In category: Gotham City,Transportation | 2 Comments »

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2 Responses to “Transit Ideas for Governor Spitzer”

  1. Larry Littlefield Says:
    December 4th, 2006 at 1:56 pm

    Ie. raise taxes by more than inflation (they go up automatically with inflation) but not fares for inflation. I’m sure the other “stakeholders” would like to raise fares but not taxes.

    It was the compromise between “stakeholders” to cut tax-based support for transportation, cut fares relative to inflation, increase debts and enrich pensions (while deferring the cost of those pensions) that got the MTA in this mess to begin with. This something for nothing mentality continues to screw to one stakeholder that is everyone’s favorite victim — the future.

    It must be that Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers, corporations, consumers, automobile drivers and other stakeholders” plan to be elsewhere when the bills come due.

    The fares should be increased at the same rate as average MTA compensation (pay, pension, health insurance costs) each and every year. Rather than the past and current practice of holding the fare down by going into debt, deferring maintenance, and then having a HUGE fair increase during a recession for deteriorating service. That’s what the “stakeholders” have given us.

  2. Asher J Matathias Says:
    January 3rd, 2007 at 5:49 pm


    13 Tevet 5767 January 3, 2007
    GOP Continues Doctrinaire as Leadership Lacks Inspiration, Vision

    As civic life begins to stir again — the Congress assembles tomorrow — voters remain full of anticipation as a new, promising, team takes the helm in Albany, already pledged to maintain the momentum on overdue reforms.

    Yet, it is dispiriting to read in recent successive dispatches (December 21, 22, 2006) by the trio Danny Hakim, Patrick Healy, and Mike McIntire, in the Metro Section of The New York Times that the storied Republican Party of New York State — heir to the successful legacy decades of the ’50’s, 60’s, and ’70’s — is being managed by political Lilliputians of the narrowest outlook, and rife with the stench of scandal (pathologies amply shared on a bipartisan basis).

    Consider the case of State Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno. Under intense inquiry for allegedly pursuing self-interest while ostensibly serving the public domain, he has refused to voluntarily step aside until the ethical cloud over his dealings is dissipated. Instead, he had the temerity to foist as chairman of my NYS Republican organization the perennially politically suspect Nassau County party chairman Joseph N. Mondello! The latter, has amassed an impressive string of electoral defeats, and still he advances instead of being unceremoniously dumped! (I am both a former long-term Committeeman and once the Republican-Liberal candidate for Assemblyman.)

    A Hudson Valley district State Senator, John Bonacic, has been the sole Republican to call for Joe Bruno to step down as majority leader. It will not be writing profiles in courage, but only recording the decent route, were more of his colleagues rush to take the high ground in initiating a change in senate leader. Immediately, the next step must be to strip Joe Mondello of his undeserved promotion.

    The decks now clear, our own 9th S.D. candidate, in recent years deputy majority leader Dean G. Skelos, can ascend to become Senate Leader! The time would have been signaled for a new politics in the key legislative chamber, the source of much gridlock. A would be Majority Leader Skelos can then reach out to newly-installed, mandate-driven, Governor Eliot Spitzer to jointly tackle the enormous issues we face — stricter oversight of lobbies, health care for uninsured, tax relief, school district consolidation, creating compact, contiguous districts and ending gerrymandering, to list a few, and not in priority order.

    The NYS Republican Party has a tradition of reform going back to Teddy Roosevelt; even the unjustly much-maligned Herbert Hoover can be so counted, as were the legendary latter-day giants Rockefeller-Javits-Lefkowitz. Let us shed xenophobia, immigrant-bashing, while we relegate religion to the church, mosque, and synagogue not the political arena. We need to get back on the road to moderation, tolerance, and progress. Messrs. Bruno and Mondello are not it.

    Sincerely, and with fraternal affection,
    Asher J. Matathias
    312 Longacre Avenue, Woodmere, NY 11598-2530
    516-374-2958 Mobile: 369-5799 [email protected]

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