MTA Won't Use Stimulus Funds to Stop Cuts

Thursday, January 07, 2010

The MTA's chairman is resisting calls to use federal stimulus money to restore free student Metrocards and other service cuts planned for later this year.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and transit advocates say the MTA should use stimulus funds to fill a budget gap rather than eliminating several bus and subway lines. But at a hearing of a state Assembly committee, MTA Chairman Jay Walder virtually ruled out doing so, saying the money needs to be used exclusively for capital projects like the Second Avenue Subway. He even evoked Mayor Abe Beame's decision in the 1970s to use capital funds to prevent a fare hike.

"I think the result of that was to drive the transit system into the ground," Walder said.

Transit advocates say federal law explicitly permits transportation systems to apply 10 percent of their stimulus money to operating costs.

More in:

The WQXR e-newsletter. Show highlights, links to music news, on-demand concerts, events from The Greene Space and more.

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.

Follow WQXR