Straphangers Upset By Planned Fare Hikes, Service Cuts
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Straphangers across the five boroughs are fuming over the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's new budget, passed today
, which includes a mix of fare hikes and crippling service cuts on subway and bus lines.
"It's not good," said one rider.
"It's ridiculous," said another.
"There's no W train," said a third. "So they're raising rates and we get worse service."
"I think it's absolutely ridiculous," said yet another. "I don't have money to be spending more on transit fare. It already takes a great chunk out of my paycheck every week."
View the details of the fare and service changes passed today by the MTA board.
New Yorkers did have kind words for MTA Board Member Norman Seabrook, the sole board member who voted against the budget.
"I'm proud of Seabrook, who voted against it. But it's a quandary even for those who voted for it," said a New Yorker.
In an 11th-hour bid for help from Albany, members of Transportation Alternatives, a transit advocacy group, staged a "Call-a-Thon" – targeting the New York State Senate, which refused to act on a plan to add a payroll tax and tolls on the East River and Harlem River bridges to keep fare increases and service cuts to a minimum. In tuxedos and gowns, TA members also urged riders to call and write their state senators, demanding action on the proposal.
"We think the plan put forward by [Assembly] Speaker Sheldon Silver and the Ravitch Commission is really the only way at this point," said Wiley Norvell of Transportation Alternatives.
MTA officials say there's still time before fare increases take effect on May 31st to reduce the amount of the increase.