The situation for the MTA is dire and commuters are going to have to pay one way or the other. “It’s going to be ‘My God, I can’t get to to work on time. How am I going to afford the fare increase? This is big stuff’,” said MTA Chairman Dale Hemmerdinger. Since Albany has been unable to approve the Ravitch plan that puts tolls on the Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg and 59th Street Bridges, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is now looking to increase bus and subway fares by 25 to 30 percent. Services will also be cut to fill in the $1 billion gap in the MTA’s budget.”These are 30-percent increases that will go into effect, trains that will not be there, bus service that wont be there people who wont be able to get to the doctors, people who wont be able to get school wont be able to get to work or it will take it a significant amount of time longer,” Hemmerdinger said.
On the Long Island Railroad many ticket booths will be closed and service to West Hempstead and Port Washington will be cut drastically. Approximately 1,000 transit workers will lose their jobs, most of them bus drivers.
“It just always seems like we’re paying and paying and paying and we’re not seeing where the money’s going,” said Todd Espozito, LIRR commuter.
“I don’t think it’s right. It’s a squeeze. It’s a squeeze on people who are just trying to survive,” said Aaron Turner, Washington Heights resident.