Westchester lawmakers say no to MTA hike at NYC rally
Westchester lawmakers joined the Straphangers Campaign group Sunday in New York City to protest looming MTA hikes.
The agency is looking to raise Metro-North and LIRR railroad rates by about 3.85 percent. The MTA also wants to raise tolls.
Assemblyman Richard Brodsky (D-Greenburgh) is asking the state and city to urge the MTA to delay an increase so that the agency can find money to fill projected budget gaps.
"What they didn't do is ask the city and government for the money," Brodsky said. "They went right to the people to pay fares. That's the heart of the mistake, that's why we're going to the governor."
The rate hike talk comes despite a $220 million MTA budget surplus. "The financial plan is designed to address $6 billion in budget gaps while actually increasing service," a spokesperson said in a statement. "Delaying a fare and toll increase will only lead to a much higher increase and unacceptable service cuts in 2009."
The MTA's first-ever online public hearing, or "Webinar," starts at 12 p.m. Monday. Participants must register online first.
The MTA will vote on the rate hike Dec. 19.
Related information:MTA: WebinarStraphangers Campaign