Agreement on MTA bailout reached

May 5, 2009 8:41:47 PM PDT
Governor Paterson and the state legislature reached agreement on a compromise MTA bailout deal Tuesday night. The compromise averts the MTA doomsday budget, which would have included massive fare hikes and service cuts.

[GET EYEWITNESS NEWS DELIVERED: Click here to sign up]

The compromise does include a 10-percent fare hike, a 50-cent taxi surcharge and a payroll tax. "Today's agreement will allow commuters to avoid the painful service reductions approved by the MTA Board earlier this year, and dramatically reduces the proposed fare and toll increases," Gov. David Paterson explained during an evening news conference. "This legislation will also allow the MTA's critical infrastructure rebuilding program to continue unimpeded at least through the end of 2011."

Under the terms of the plan, the base subway and bus fare will rise to $2.25, from $2, under the deal. The monthly MetroCard would rise to $89, from $81.

Fares and tolls would rise again by 7.5 percent in 2011 and 2013.

The deal sets a single rate for the payroll tax in all 12 counties served by the authority. A Senate version of the plan had called for a lower rate in three outlying counties.

The payroll tax will bring in an expected $1.53 billion a year.

You could end up helping pay for the plan in the way of a 50 cent surcharge on taxi rides, a $25 increase in vehicle registation fees, a 25 to 30 percent rise in drivers license fees and a five percent increase in a tax on car rentals.

Lawmakers said those fees will generate a total of $270 million a year.

The rescue plan would provide billions of dollars over the next few years to help the MTA close budget deficits and finance its capital program, which pays for maintenance and modernization projects for the transit and commuter rail system.

A vote on the plan was expected on Wednesday.


MORE NEW YORK AND TRI-STATE AREA NEWS

USEFUL LINKS:
SEND TIP OR PHOTO  || REPORT TYPO ||  GET WIDGET

 EYEWITNESS TWITTER ||  FIND US ON FACEBOOK


Load Comments