Stunner: Gov. Paterson Called For End To Student MetroCards


david-paterson-closeup_0A political irony yesterday, Gov. David Paterson has lead the chorus complaining about the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s decision to whack the student MetroCard program, but he’s the one who cut the funds in the first place.

It’s a surprising development. The blame for eliminating free student transit passes starts with Paterson.

“I think the voters, parents and the students should have a full accounting of what is happening here,” Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer said.

Stringer was stunned to discover that the man who ultimately forced the MTA to cut the program was Paterson because he slashed funds to pay for it.

Proof that it was Paterson’s decision to cut student MetroCards is in his deficit reduction plan. On page 79 of the bill it eliminates all but $6 million of the funds.

Lawmakers told CBS 2 HD they had no idea the governor’s decision to cut the program was buried in the bill.

“Yes, in fact, I admit I was stunned that that was a line item in there and I don’t exactly understand why it was there,” said Sen. Liz Krueger, a Democrat and the chairperson of the Committee on Budget and Tax Reform.

Ironically, after the public outcry over the cuts the governor said that if the economy turns around he’ll try to restore the money — which is not very reassuring to parents and students who rely on subways and buses to get to school.

The principal of one Manhattan school told CBS 2 HD 40 percent of her 700 students could be stranded because their parents can’t afford transportation.

“Our kids come from all over the city and I’d be concerned that some kids wouldn’t be coming to school on certain days because their parents hadn’t gotten paid yet,” Stacy Goldstein said.

Dominic Logue and Eloise Flesh, at School for the Future, told CBS 2 HD how losing the discount card would affect them.

“I think it would mean I wouldn’t be able to go to SoF anymore,” Logue said.

“I don’t think my parents would want me to go to SoF anymore because it is such a far travel and a lot of money to pay every month,” Flesh added.

Parents and local politicians are so angry that they are planning a day of outrage at MTA headquarters on Monday.

Several lawmakers point out that the MTA got a $2 billion dollar bailout from the state just six months ago and should be able to find money to save the student discounts from the chopping block.

{WCBS-TV/Noam Newscenter}


  1. If he believed that he ouldn’thave been tracked down as the ‘brains’ behind this, this ‘accidental govorner’ is way too naive to remain in office.