mta

Fare remains at $2.50, but week and month pass rise

  • Date: December 30, 2010
  • Base fare remains at $2.25 [1]
    • Though single ride increases to $2.50
      • is this the first time they have diverged?
    • 30-day unlimited increases from $89 to $104
    • 7-day unlimited increases from $27 to $29
    • Time-based passes will remain unlimited, after board rejected a ride-capping proposal
    • A third of riders use 30-day passes
    • Fare increase expected to increase revenues by 7.5%
      • Earlier 2010 service cuts were due to budget deficit caused by lower tax revenue and cut in state funding
    • 30-day (month) pass cost $63 a month when introduced in 1998
      • Has increased 65% in 12 years, far greater than inflation
    • Bonus drops to 7%
  • Source: Michael M. Grynbaum, "M.T.A. Approves Transit Fare Increases," The New York Times, October 7, 2010. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta walder

2015 MTA Budget

  • Source: Emma G. Fitzsimmons, "M.T.A. Approves Budget, but Deal Cuts 2nd Ave. Line Funding," The New York Times, October 28, 2015. link
  • Tags: budget mta second-avenue todo

New Fare Payment Technology

  • Source: Emma G. Fitzsimmons, "From Swipes to Taps: A Look at the End for MetroCards," The New York Times, April 18, 2016. link
  • Tags: fare-payment mta todo

Fare remains at $2.75, but week and month pass rise

  • Date: March 19, 2017
  • Base fare remains $2.75, bonus lowered from 11% to 5%
  • Weekly pass increases from $31 to $32
  • Monthly pass increases from $116.50 to $121
  • Source: Emma G. Fitzsimmons, "M.T.A. Votes to Raise Fares and Tolls: What You Need to Know," The New York Times, January 25, 2017. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

Ravitch named MTA chairman

  • Source: Leslie Maitland, "Carey Asks Richard Ravitch to Be Head of the M.T.A.," The New York Times, October 12, 1979. link
  • Tags: chairmen mta ravitch

Program Planners Study on Federal Operating Assistance

  • NYCTA received 7.5% of operating budget from federal aid ($127mil of $1.7bil) versus 17.6% for LA [1]
    • Study by Program Planners Inc and Jack Bigel (yes, the one from union talks)
    • Reagan was proposing ending federal operating assistance for mass transit in 1985
    • Studied cities with 1000 or more revenue vehicles
      • LA, Philadephia, Chicago, Atlanta, Washington, San Francisco, NY
    • Federal operating assistance formula revised in 1978 to give weight to cities with greater than 750k people and rail systems
    • Federal operating assistance totaled $1.0939bil in 1980, 30.2% of government aid
      • State assistance was $820.4mil, local assistance was $1.7039bil
    • Ravitch says fares cover 55% of MTA's $2.5bil operating budget (all modes)
      • Local and state subsidies cover 37%
      • Local taxes, which have increases with lowering of federal assistance, are "much less progressive than the Federal income tax"
    • New York's fare was 75 cents at the time
  • Source: Peter Kihss, "CITY SAID TO TRAIL IN U.S. TRANSIT AID," The New York Times, June 6, 1982. link
  • Tags: bigel city-assistance federal-assistance mta ravitch report state-assistance

Fare starts at 5 cents

  • Date: October 27, 1904
  • "And would the uniform five-cent fare, stipulated by the Rapid Transit Acts of 1891 and 1894, be enough to cover these contingencies?"
  • Source: Wallace B. Katz, "The New York Rapid Transit Decision of 1900," Historic American Engineering Record, pp2-144, 1979. link)
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

School Children Fare Debate

  • Was this the beginning of the end for 100% farebox recovery?
  • Source: "The 20-Cent Fare Arrives," The New York Times, October 26, 1963. link
  • Source: "City to Add 9 Million Aid To Help Keep 15c Fare," The New York Times, July 10, 1963. link
  • Source: "NEW TRANSIT AID IS LINKED TO FARE," The New York Times, October 16, 1963. link
  • Source: E.R. Shipp, "M.T.A. Drops Pupil Half-Fare Program," The New York Times, June 14, 1980. link
  • Tags: fares mta student-fares

Fare increases from $2 to $2.25

  • Date: June 28, 2009
  • MTA considered raising base fare to $3, but "state approved a bailout last month boosting mass transit subsidies"
  • Payroll mobility tax on 12-county MTA region was created, vehicle registration and parking fees were increased
  • Hike was coupled with service cuts
  • Unlimited ride MetroCard increases
    • 1-day: $7.50 to $8.25
    • 7-day: $25 to $27
    • 14-day: $47 to $51.50
    • 30-day: $81 to $89
  • Pay-per-ride bonus remains at 8%
  • In March 2009, MTA board previously approved increase from $2 to $2.50 [2]
    • Before Ravitch Commission report was adopted in the legislature, which created Payroll Mobility Tax
    • Report also suggested tolls on East River and Harlem River bridges
    • MTA executive director Elliot G. Sander referred to capital construction binge from 2000 to 2004 as being put "on a credit card"
  • Source: "Farewell $2, hi $2.25," New York Daily News, June 28, 2009. link
  • Source: "M.T.A. Increases Fares and Cuts Services," The New York Times, March 25, 2009. link
  • Source: "Approved Fares for NYC Transit, MTA Bus, Long Island Bus and the Staten Island Railway," Metropolitan Transportation Authority, December 30, 2010. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta sanders

Fare increases from $1.50 to $2

  • Date: May 4, 2003
  • 30-day pass raised to $70, 7-day pass to $21, 1-day pass to $7
  • Source: mta
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

Fare increases from $1 to $1.15

  • Date: January 1, 1990
  • A 1987 agreement with the unions, Governor, and Legislature "provided for the $1.15 fare" [1]
    • Occurred while approving 1987 $8.5bil capital plan
    • Written primarily by Felix Rohatyn
  • Increase of 15% was to close $200mil budget defecit
  • There was a political retreat from a $1.25 fare
    • Some say due to public outcry, others say it was a political gimmick
  • Kiley said in July 1989 that more than a $1.15 fare may be necessary
    • Ridership had not increased, resulting in $15mil less revenue than expected
    • Corporate-tax revenues were down $15mil
    • Federal aid was $25mil less than expected
  • "Technically, the M.T.A. can approve fare increases without the agreement of lawmakers. The Legislature, however, controls the authority's huge capital plans, giving it strong influence." [2]
  • Source: "Turnstile Politics: Preparing for the $1.15 Token," The New York Times, December 3, 1989. link
  • Source: "Kiley Says Fares Could Increase Beyond $1.15 Planned for 1990," The New York Times, June 1, 1989. link
  • Source: David E. Pitt, "A $1.15 Token Now Supported By Transit Staff," The New York Times, December 2, 1989. link
  • Source: Eric Schmitt, "Transit Lines Brace for Test Of $1.15 Fare," The New York Times, January 2, 1990. link
  • Tags: fare-increases federal-assistance kiley mta rohatyn

Fare increases from 75 cents to 90 cents

  • Date: January 2, 1984
  • Kiley defends increases to make up operating deficits
  • 1984 budget is $3.7bil
  • New fares and tolls expected to generate $270mil
  • Elderly and handicapped returned to half fare 24 hours a day
    • Had been half fare only outside of 7am and 9am
  • City Council President Carol Bellamy had several criticisms
    • Questioned whether $38mil reserve fund for track work was necessary
    • Thought some operating budget items should actually be capital budget items
    • Thought budget was too conservative in "failing to count on receiving certain Federal financing"
  • Board endorsed Koch's proposal to have MTA set up administrative board to prosecute fare evadors, rather than sending them to court, as was currently done
  • Source: Suzanne Daley, "M.T.A. RAISES FARES AND TOLLS BY 20% ACROSS THE BOARD," The New York Times, December 17, 1983. link
  • Tags: fare-increases federal-assistance kiley mta

Fare increases from 60 cents to 75 cents

  • Approved by the MTA on July 2nd, took effect on July 3rd
  • Continued to use 60 cent token
  • A two-step increase was approved: fare would increase again to $1 in two weeks(!) if no additional state aid was provided
  • Without second increase or addition state aid, NYC Transit Authority would still face annual defecit of $240mil
  • Source: Judith Cummings, "City's Fare Rises to 75 cents and Rails Increase by 25%," The New York Times, July 3, 1981. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta ravitch

Fare increases from 15 cents to 20 cents

  • Date: July 5, 1966
  • Fifth Avenue Coach Lines, a private bus company, wanted Wagner administration to increase fare to 20 cents in 1961 [2]
    • seems to imply NYCTA-specified fare applied to more than NYCTA
    • 15-cent fare possible because taxpayer subsidizes all NYCTA capital costs
      • 1961 debt service was $92mil
    • City-owned NYCTA did not pay taxes, Fifth Avenue coaches paid more than $4mil annually in taxes
  • Source: "REACTIONS MIXED TO 20-CENT FARE," The New York Times, July 6, 1966. link
  • Source: "A 20-Cent Fare?," The New York Times, May 5, 1961. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

Fare increases from 10 cents to 15 cents

  • Date: July 25, 1953
  • Legislature prohibits NYCTA running an operational deficit
  • Board at the time appears to be 5 members (pre-MTA)
  • For years, 5-cent fare had produced operating surplus
    • Operatuing surplus of $28mil in 1941
    • Operating deficits of $17mil and $31mil in 1947 and 1948, respectively
  • O'Dwyer ended the 5-cent fare in 1948 because it was effectively damaging schools and hospitals
  • The July 25th effective date for 15-cent fare is a week ahead of legal deadline
  • Ridership decline of 11% expected
    • Ridership had been falling 2-3% annually, independent of fare increases
  • Recent changes to hurt transit finances
    • Five-day work-week
    • Longer vacations
    • More paid holidays
    • Increased private automobile use
    • 40-hour work week
  • Transit agency payroll tripled in a decade
  • Deferred maintenance backlog estimated to be $75mil
  • General Hugh J. Casey was authority chairman
  • Source: "THE 15-CENT FARE," The New York Times, July 14, 1953. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

63rd St Tunnel Connection Opens

  • Date: December 16, 2001
  • Start of V service was delayed by 9/11
  • V to run between Forest Hills-71 St and Second Avenue on the Lower East Side
  • Expected to increase service on Queens Boulevard by up to 20%
  • Uses $645mil tunnel connecting Queens Boulevard lines to 63 St Tunnel
  • Source: "New Subway Line To Start," The New York Times, November 28, 2001. link
  • Tags: expansion mta

Board of Estimate approves Second Avenue bond vote

  • Source: "$500,000,000 VOTED FOR 2D AVE. SUBWAY BY ESTIMATE BOARD," The New York Times, September 14, 1951. link
  • Tags: bonds mta second-avenue todo

Fare increases from $2.25 to $2.50

  • Date: March 3, 2013
  • Bonus decreased from 7% to 5%
  • Board member Allen Cappelli noted the difference in conversation since 2010, "We're not talking about reducing services, I think that's good news for New Yorkers."
  • Held public hearings throughout fall 2010 to give riders chance to discuss four fare package proposals
    • Riders wanted to keep the bonus and did not want to see big increase in 30-day pass price
    • 2010 increase on 30-day cards was $89 to $104, a 17% increase
  • Lhota announced his resignation to run for mayor after December 18th board meeting
  • Fare and toll increases expected to raise $450mil annually
  • Board members wished for greater transit subsidies rather than biannual fare increases
  • Source: "Increase in Base Subway Fare and 30-Day Pass Is Approved," The New York Times, December 19, 2012. link
  • Source: "M.T.A. Weighs Who Will Pay When It Raises Transit Fares," The New York Times, October 12, 2012. link
  • Source: mta
  • Tags: fare-increases lhota mta

TWU Strike Averted

  • Source: "Agreement Reached on Transit Contract," The New York Times, January 1, 1972. link
  • Tags: mta todo twu unions

Fare increases from 30 cents to 35 cents

  • Increase could rise to 45 cents due to new "trasit contract"
    • Depedendent on size of tax package to be considered in Albany
  • MTA board had 11 members
  • Could reuse old tokens or create new ones
  • Fare increase required approval from Federal Price Commission
  • Source: "Transit Fare Situation," The New York Times, January 2, 1972. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

MTA Fares Misc

Fare increases from 5 cents to 10 cents

  • Date: July 1, 1948
  • $37.5mil increase in fare revenue during last 6 months of 1948 [2]
    • But 12% drop in ridership (25.5mil less)
  • Average fare paid was 9.53 cents
    • Less than the actual fare of 10 cents because a combined subway and surface line fare was 12 cents
    • Rather than 10 cents plus 7 cents
  • Other interesting items:
    • Board of Transportation added 1272 staff, 940 which "were permanent under civil service"
    • 14 deoderizing and germ-killing lamps were installed in IRT stations at Times Square and Grand Central
  • Historically, transit was not required to be self-supporting because a fare increase would benefit private owners of "traction securities" [3]
    • No longer relevant since city now owned system
    • "Some of the cars in use are nearly forty years old"
    • City was providing $30mil annual subsidy to keep 5-cent fare using real estate taxes
    • Committee of Fifteen contained business, real estate, and industrial representatives
      • They proposed fare of 7.5 cents (2 for 15) to produce $45mil
        • Would cover $30mil current operational deficit
        • Allow $8mil for maintenance
        • And $7mil to replace old rolling stock
        • Allow for 6% cut in tax rate
        • And increase city's borrowing power, as the transit system would be operationally self-supporting ("making the transit debt self-liquidating"), which would allow for new subway construction
  • In first 28 days of 10 cent fare (a 100% increase), rapid transit revenues only rose 69.77% [4]
    • Partly due to the 12 cent transit fares with transfer sold above
    • But also the institution of 16 free transfers between divisions
  • Surface lines (bus and street car) fare increased from 5 to 7 cents, but only saw 18.96% rise in revenue [4]
    • All surface fare zones eliminated in Staten Island, Brooklyn, and Queens
    • 2-cent transfer charge for Brooklyn surface lines eliminated
    • On 12 cent fare with transfer to rapid transit, surface lines only collecting share of 5 cents
      • seems like an internal NYCTA policy
  • Source: "Report for the three and one-half years ending June 30, 1949.," The City of New York Board of Transportation, 82, 1949. link
  • Source: Paul Crowell, "City Gains $37,520,822 in 6 Months Under New Fares, but Fewer Ride," The New York Times, February 17, 1949. link
  • Source: "THE FIVE-CENT FARE," The New York Times, January 13, 1942. link
  • Source: "TRANSIT REVENUES UP 56.77% IN JULY," The New York Times, August 14, 1948. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta reports

Fare increases from $2.50 to $2.75

  • Date: March 22, 2015
  • Increases scheduled to occur every two years as part of the "authority's long-term revenue plans"
  • Using borrowing to close capital gap could increase pressure to raise fares faster than scheduled
    • This implies to me that debt service increases aren't scheduled, why not?
  • Bonus for pay-per-ride MetroCards increased from 5% to 11%
  • Board chose base fare increase against keeping base fare constant and eliminating the bonus
    • Bonus kept because advocates serves as important discount for riders who cannot afford weekly or monthly passes
    • Fare capping would also work
  • Prendergast said increase needed to "balance budget agains the rising costs of providing services"
  • Increase expected to generate $210mil in 2015
  • Plan to unveil new fare payment system in 2020 and remove MetroCards by end of 2022
  • Improved financial outlook in 2013 hinted at smaller increases for 2015 and 2017 [2]
    • Ridership and real estate revenues both up
    • "The regularly scheduled increases are part of a rescue plan approved by the State Legislature in 2009."
    • This plan reduced expected revenues by over $900mil
      • To be balanced by 3 years of "net zero" labor cost increases
  • Source: "M.T.A. Is Raising Fares and Tolls; One Subway or Bus Ride Will Cost $2.75," The New York Times, January 22, 2015. link
  • Source: Matt Flegenheimer, "M.T.A. Sees Smaller Fare Increases in ’15 and ’17," The New York Times, November 13, 2013. link
  • Tags: fare-increases foran mta prendergast

Fare increases from 90 cents to $1

  • Date: January 1, 1986
  • Legislature saved 90-cent fare at end of 1984 by extending a corporate tax surcharge that helps subsidize mass transit in the NYC metro
  • Increase came as Transit Authority faced potential $225mil operating defecit for 1986
    • When did they stop calling themselves the Transit Authority?
  • Koch wanted to keep 90-cent fare for another year through a state increase of tax on real estate transactions greater than $1mil in the city
  • Cuomo said keeping 90-cent fare was not in his priorities, and wanted the legislature to focus on medical malpractice insurance
    • Koch responded, "I mean, you have to be able to do more than chew gum."
  • Source: "THE REGION; THE LAST DAYS OF THE 90-CENT FARE," The New York Times, December 8, 1985. link
  • Tags: cuomo-mario fare-increases koch mta

Fare increases from 50 cents to 60 cents

  • Date: June 28, 1980
  • Carey refused to rule out another increase
  • MNR referred to as "Conrail's commuter lines north of the city"
  • Sidney Schwartz, New York state's special fiscal monitor for the city, warned that fares may have to rise to 75 cents in 1981 unless "the financially troubled Transit Authority gets more aid and improves its management."
  • "Long Lines Expected" on Monday morning - MetroCard would eliminate this aspect of fare increases
    • Expected the morning rush to continue through 10 A.M., rather than the usual 9 A.M.
  • Ravitch, in April 1980, expected rise would need to be 75 cents [3]
  • Fiscal experts said 50-cent fare could be held with new tax on gross receipts by oil companies (yielding $150mil annually) and a surcharge on the gas tax (yielding $20mil annually) [4]
    • MTA budget showed $398mil deficit for fiscal year April 1, 1980 to March 31, 1981
    • Package expected to be supported by suburban voters because of minimal impact on them, including no commuter rail fare increases
    • 10-cent fare increase expected to provide $100mil increase in revenues
      • wonder what this is like today
    • Also necessary to hold 50-cent fare:
      • 25-cent toll increase to give $30mil to Transit Authority (today NYCT) and $30mil to commuter railroads
      • $56mil increase in subsidy from the city, from current $304.6mil
      • Additional $40mil "found" state budget through accounting differences
    • Strike increased 1979 deficit by $18.1mil and 1980 deficit by $92.7mil
      • $39.6mil gained penalties against strikers for violating state's Taylor Law
      • $26mil in lost fare revenues during the strike
      • $109.1mil lost in additional wages over 2 years
      • $19mil in additonal benefits payments
    • Productivity gains from new agreement with TWU estimated $15mil savings due to "addition of 20 minutes of productive work time"
      • assuming this means less overtime pay
  • Source: "Old and New Commuter Fares in New York Area," The New York Times, June 30, 1980. link
  • Source: "Transit Officials Brace for Rush on Tokens," The New York Times, June 30, 1980. link
  • Source: "Ravitch Predicts 75 Transit Fare If Legislature Doesn't Act By July," The New York Times, April 21, 1980. link
  • Source: David A. Andelman, "$170 Million in New Taxes Called the Key to 50 Fare," The New York Times, April 26, 1980. link
  • Tags: carey fare-increases mta ravitch strike-1980

Fare increases from 35 cents to 50 cents

  • Interesting era for transit funding, with city in fiscal trouble and federal dollars for transit beginning: "In this city, so close to insolvency, little more can be expected in direct subsidy out of existing tax funds. But there is need for quick action on a new regional tax to underwrite mass transit, of the kind now under study by a state legislative committee. There is also need for more substantial financial support from Washington, now that the initial breakthrough has been made on Federal subsidy for both operating and capital costs."
  • MTA ran a defecit, "even operating with more than a half-billion dollars in Federal, state and municipal subsidy"
  • Article was a call for improved labor costs and work practices
  • Mentions an experiment train that would have lower energy usage
    • not sure which model this would be
  • Source: "Costlier Token," The New York Times, September 2, 1975. link
  • Tags: fare-increases federal-assistance mta

Fare increases from 20 cents to 30 cents

  • Date: January 4, 1970
  • Old tokens could be redeemed for their 20 cent value, or used as 20 cents on buses
  • 26 million new tokens were ordered
  • Besides station booths, "900 additional outlets, including banks, shops, newstands and other private businesses that have been selling tokens in the past" would sell new ones
  • Special fare from 42nd and 8th to Aqueduct raised from 75 cents to $1
    • I wonder how this was enforced
  • Half fares for those over 65 remained in effect
  • Old tokens would be put in storage for future need
  • 370 Jay St was authority's revenue department, where you could redeem old tokens over $3
  • Source: "New Tokens Go on Sale in Subways," The New York Times, January 3, 1970. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta

Emergency exit bars added

  • Date: 2006
  • Emergency exit push bars were added to the previously locked gates
    • NOT CONFIRMED this was in response do the 2005 London Underground bombings
  • Source: "MTA finally silences subway emergency exit alarms," New York Post, December 31, 2004. link
  • Tags: mta safety

Bob Kiley appointed MTA Chair

New Yorker on Bob Kiley

  • MTA offices were at 347 Madison Avenue, near Grand Central
  • Britain's Labour party still (2004) gets most of its funding from unions
  • Kiley wanted public bondds to finance Tube improvements, Blair and Treasury wanted to use PPPs, let to privatization of the Tube
  • Tube control was transfered to TfL in July 2004
  • Kiley was chair of MTA from 1983 to 1990, took over the Underground at age 68
  • Margaret Thatcher abolished the Greater London Council in 1986, which was led by Ken Livingstone
  • Blair government engaged in massive devolution and recreated independent municipal government in London, but did not want to hand over control of the Underground with Livingstone as mayor
  • TfL was newly created
  • Kiley's subway chief at MTA was David Gunn
    • They also worked together at MBTA
    • Gunn briefly joined Kiley in London, but ran Amtrak at the time of this article
  • Appointed to Amtrak Board of Directors by Clinton in 1993
  • Known for engaging in public fights with New York's transit labor unions
  • "This would be a three-fer," Kiley said about the opportunity to lead in London, after running the old subway systems in Boston and NYC
  • Source: "The Talk of the Town: Robert Kiley," The New Yorker, October 31, 1983. link
  • Source: "Underground Man," The New Yorker, February 9, 2004. link
  • Tags: kiley mta tfl

MTA Courts Kiley

  • Date: October 8, 1983
  • Cuomo's counsel, Timothy Russert, sat with Kiley at Fenway during Yaz Day (Carl Yastrzemski's last game) to discuss the MTA job
  • The govenor's staff's codename for Kiley was "The Badge," "because he had been Deputy Mayor in charge of public safety in Boston from 1972 to 1975 and before that a C.I.A. official"
  • Source: "THE SECRET COURTING OF ROBERT KILEY," The New York Times, October 8, 1983. link
  • Tags: kiley mta

New Yorker on Ravitch-era capital plans

  • Date: June 25, 1984

  • Capital plan approved by NY state legislature, June 24, 1981

  • 1981 tax plan would come up $250mil short, so the legislature passed a 2-year corporate franchise tax in 1982 to make up the difference
    • This was after the long-lines tax on transportation companies was uncollectible
      • State is not allowed to tax interstate commerce, but they attempted to tax, say, a plane ticket from Albany to Washington's New York state component - also prohibited by federal law - which one?
  • Pullman had scandal involving cracked undercarriages on R46s
    • MTA won $72mil judgement from Pullman in December 1981
  • Kawasaki and Bombardier deal led to R62s and R62As
  • p65 - Cuomo wanted to reorganize MTA board after Bombardier deal - look for source
  • Fall 1981 - Metromedia lease
  • Dole's bill extended safe harbor leasing for transit to be delivered by 1987 (end of Bombardier bill)
  • Enactment of state law barring MTA from bankruptcy after comment from Robert Gerrard, managing director of Dillon Read
  • Congress passed measure giving MTA operating control of Harlem, Hudson, and New Haven commuter lines
    • Required $60mil transitional fund
  • First capital program increased from $7.2bil to $8.5bil after 1982 federal gas tax increase
  • Around time of Ravitch's resignation, Cuomo attempted to reorganize the board so that the chairman would not longer serve 6 year terms, but at the govenor's behest
    • isn't it still this way?
  • MTA sued Grumman Flexible due to faulty chassis on buses and had to repay federal money for purchase to the UMTA
  • 1983 NRDC report gave rare approval of MTA performance
  • New bus depot opened in 1984 in Sunset Park because new buses were too large to enter old one
  • After 12th derailment in 1983, red flags were put on track to signal 10mph sections
    • what is speed limit in today's restricted areas?
    • Subway track was supposed to receive two walking inspections a week
  • City's water table had risen 10 feet over previous 30 years, sitting tunnels on water rather than ground
  • Source: Lardner, James, "Painting the Elephant," The New Yorker, pp42-71, June 25, 1984. link
  • Tags: articles capital-plan mta ravitch

Ravitch Commission

  • Date: December 4, 2008
  • Ravitch Commission unveils report on suggestions to close $1.2 billion deficit for 2009, after real estate transfer taxes and NYS corporate surcharge tax revenues dropped during the recession and Bloomberg’s congestion pricing plan failed in the state legislature
  • Source: pcac
  • Source: "Ravitch Unveils M.T.A. Rescue Plan," The New York Times, December 4, 2008. link
  • Tags: mta ravitch ravitch-commission

Cuomo requests federal funds for high speed rail

  • Date: April 4, 2011
  • $295 million for MTA to construct Harold Interlocking (flyover for Amtrak NEC which currently must wait for LIRR)
  • It was approved (according the “The Road Back”) WAS THIS EVER BUILT???
  • Source: nyg
  • Tags: cuomo-andrew federal mta

de Blasio pushes for "Millionaire's Tax"

  • Date: August 7, 2017
  • Would increase city income tax rate for those making over $500k from 3.9% to 4.4%
  • Expected to be paid by 32,000 NYers
  • Expected to raise $700-$800mil annually
    • $500mil for capital costs, $250mil for half-price MetroCard program
  • Must pass state legislature
  • Source: "Bill de Blasio Will Push for Tax on Wealthy to Fix Subway," The New York Times, August 6, 2017. link
  • Tags: de-blasio mta taxes

Conducting a Search For Origins Of 'One Fare'

  • Date: 1997
  • Article ran on day of MetroCard's introduction (July 4, 1997)
  • Peter Stangl (MTA chair in 1992) proposed "fare deal" to offset 25-cent fare hike with discounts and free transfers
  • Richard Ravitch (MTA chair in 1982) considered automated turnstile to allow riders from outer boroughs to reach Manhattan on a single fare
  • Source: nyc
  • Source: nyt
  • Tags: fares mta

From Rescue to Renaissance: The Achievements of the MTA Capital Program 1982 - 2004

The Road Back - History of MTA capital plan

William J. Ronan, former MTA chair, dies

  • Source: "William J. Ronan, Architect of the M.T.A., Dies at 101," The New York Times, October 18, 2014. link
  • Tags: mta ronan

MTA Bus Company created

  • Date: 2004
  • Funding came from LaGuardia connection?
  • Source: apta
  • Tags: mta mta-bus

Congestion pricing dies after failing to reach a vote in the State Assembly

  • Date: April 7, 2008
  • Would have created $8 fee to enter parts of Manhattan
  • Would have raised $500mil annually and unlocked $354mil in immediate federal grants
  • Source: "Congestion Pricing Plan Dies in Albany," The New York Times, April 7, 2008. link
  • Tags: congestion-pricing mta

MTA approves budget cuts that remove V and W trains

  • Date: March 24, 2010
  • Source: "Transit Agency Approves Cuts, and More Bad News Looms," The New York Times, March 25, 2010. link
  • Tags: budget mta

Joseph Giulietti

  • Announced President of Metro North on January 9, 2014
  • Credited with rebuilding positive narrative surrounding MNR after Spuyten-Duyvil derailment which killed 4 in December 2013
    • Source: (missing, heard during July 26, 2017 MTA board meeting)
  • Tags: mta people

New York State Transportation Bond Act

  • Date: 2005
  • Provided $1.45 billion towards 2005-2009 MTA capital program from state (state assumes debt service….I think)
  • Source: mta
  • Source: "Voters Approve Transit Bonds for $2.9 Billion," The New York Times, November 9, 2005. link
  • Tags: bonds mta

Fare increases from $1.25 to $1.50

  • Date: November 12, 1995
  • Board voted to increase fare to $1.50 on October 19, 1995, a 20% increase
  • To take effect on November 12
    • One week delay cost the MTA $5.3mil
    • New token introduced to prevent hoarding, last before MetroCard
  • 20% increases had been avoided since 1984 by Govenor or Mayor eventually providing more funds
  • E. Virgil Conway was MTA chair at the time
  • New York Urban League and Straphanger's Campaign said they would sue MTA in federal court saying the fare increase would "violate the 1964 Civil Rights Act because it would affect the poor, blacks and Hispanic people most heavily"
    • did this happen?
  • Canceled fare increase on express buses from $4 to $5, saying they wouldn't be able to compete with private buses
    • Express buses are biggest money losers in the system
  • Source: "THE $1.50 SUBWAY RIDE: THE OVERVIEW;M.T.A. VOTE RAISES FARE ON SUBWAYS AND BUSES TO $1.50," The New York Times, October 20, 1995. link
  • Tags: conway fare-increases mta

MTA To Find

  • Bear, Stearns & Co. Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Finances of Mass Transit Services in New York City. New York: Bear Stearns, 1983.
  • Crowell, William H. "Financing mass transit in New York City"
  • Ravitch, Richard. "Staff Report of Capital Revitalization for the 1980s and Beyond"
  • Tags: mta todo

MTA Misc

MTA Office of the Inspector General created

Reagan Administration says MTA violated international trade agreements

  • Date: May 28, 1982
  • Canadian Export Development Corporation agreed to lend the MTA $563mil (85% of $662mil car purchase price) at 9.7% for 15 years
    • OECD minimum rate at the time was 11.25% for terms of length 5-8.5 years
  • Source: "U.S. SEES VIOLATION OF TRADE ACCORDS IN M.T.A. PROPOSAL," The New York Times, May 29, 1982. link
  • Tags: mta ravitch

Bob Dole denounces $100mil MTA leasing deal

  • Date: April 9, 1982
  • Source: "DOLE SEES 'HORROR STORY' IN M.T.A. LEASING DEAL," The New York Times, April 9, 1982. link
  • Tags: mta ravitch

NY State Legislature approves 5 taxes to provide MTA operating assistance

  • Date: July 10, 1981
  • Avoided fare increase from $0.75 to $1
  • Five taxes:
    • "The gross-receipts tax on the oil companies."
    • "An increase in the state sales tax of a quarter of a cent on the dollar in the region served by the M.T.A. The tax would be computed by rounding up to the nearest whole cent for fractions of 0.5 cents or more and rounding down for fractions under 0.5 cents."
    • "A 10 percent tax on capital gains in real-estate transfers of more than $1 million within New York City."
    • "A tax based on the net income and capital of oil companies' outof-state and international operations."
    • "A corporate franchise tax of 0.75 percent on the gross returns from the in-state portion of interstate communications and commercial transport." Known as the "long lines" tax.
  • I think these all still exist. Should annotate individually.
  • Source: "FIVE TAXES VOTED IN ALBANY TO GIVE MASS-TRANSIT AID," The New York Times, July 10, 1981. link
  • Source: Richard J. Meislin, "FARE RISES TO 75 CENTS; TRANSIT TAX PLAN DRAWN IN ALBANY," The New York Times, July 3, 1981. link
  • Tags: mta taxes

Third Avenue El closes in the Bronx

  • Date: April 29, 1973
  • Last stretch to close was between Gun Hill Road and 149th St
  • Ran 12 blocks east of the IND Concourse Line
  • Replaced with buses seemingly to lower an operating defecit
  • Source: "Third Ave. El Reaches the End of Its Long, Noisy, Blighted, Nostalgic Line," The New York Times, April 29, 1973. link
  • Tags: elevated mta

Ronan pleads for 1971 state transportation bond issue

  • Date: October 5, 1971
  • It would fail at the ballot a month later
  • $2.5bil issue would be split $1.35bil for transit and $1.15bil for highways
    • A rarity to have transit amount greater than highways, and Ronan knew it
  • Ronan said new bond would be used to improve existing systems, since riders complained that 1967 bond showed little tangible benefits (spent mostly on Second Avenue Subway?)
  • Fare would go to 45 or 50 cents (from 30) if bond didn't pass
    • Isn't this mixing capital and operating expenses?
    • Yes, but some capital projects were already being paid out of farebox income
    • This was pre-capital program, so my details on all this are weak right now
  • Source: "Ronan Calls Bond-Issue Vote Key to Stable Subway Fares," The New York Times, October 5, 1971. link
  • Tags: bonds mta ronan

Regional Transportation Program

  • Date: August 1969
  • Highlights expansions and improvements as part of Mayor John Lindsay's "Program for Action"
  • Source: "Regional Transportation Program," Metropolitan Transportation Authority, August 1969. link
  • Tags: expansion mta program-for-action reports

Fare raised from $1.15 to $1.25

  • Date: January 1, 1992
  • Took effect at midnight, handwritten signs announced day before
    • Passengers only allowed to buy 4 tokens at old fare to prevent hoarding
    • Created new physical token to prevent use of slugs (does this mean fakes?)
  • Peter E. Stangl was MTA chairman at the time
  • MTA required by state to produce a balanced budget
    • The board voted 12-to-2 to approve this budget even though it was technically not balanced
  • Faced $263mil budget defecit, fare increase lowered this to $157mil
    • To fully close the gap, the increase would have needed to be to $1.40
    • Not sure how the $157mil ended up being found, need more sources
    • It was discussed to transfer $90mil from relatively healthy LIRR and MNR, which was contentious because of:
      • it would represent a suburban->urban transfer (which was opposed by Republication legislators)
      • and because of transfer of capital funds to operating funds
        • Senate Transportation Committee chairman Norman Levy claimed this, but MTA officials denied this
        • Levy argued this transfer would be similar to 1960s and 70s, when MTA several deferred maintenance on its infrastructure
  • Subway and bus farebox recovery was 61% in 1991, commuter railroads was less than 50%
  • Operating deficit was caused by a sharp downturn in the local economy
  • Source: "Token price rises 10 cents to $1.25 in New York City," The New York Times, January 1, 1992. link
  • Source: Sam Howe Verhovek, "G.O.P. Senator Opposes Using Rail Funds to Limit Subway Fare," The New York Times, December 5, 1991. link
  • Tags: fare-increases mta stangl

Board of Estimate approves Second Avenue Subway and 11 other new routes

  • Program cost of $1.26bil was to be split
    • $600mil from state from bond issue ($2.5bil approved by voters in November 1967)
    • $500mil from city, "borrowed through its capital-budget allocations"
    • rest from federal
  • Changed SAS plan from four track to two tracks
  • Source: "City Approves 2d Ave. Subway And 11 Other New Transit Line," The New York Times, September 21, 1968. link
  • Tags: expansion mta second-avenue

63rd St Tunnel Location Debated

  • Date: 1964
  • CBC thought tunnel on 61st St would lead to better East Side IRT and future line connections
  • Source: "Proposed Subway Tube Assailed As 'Nowhere-to-Nowhere' Lin," The New York Times, December 16, 1964. link
  • Tags: expansion mta

The Light at the End of the Subway

  • Date: February 1, 1982
  • Only 10 subway stations had ever been modernized (as of 1982)
  • Capital plan money couldn't be used by law for hiring additional police, but it could fund crime fighting indirectly through safer station design and CCTV
  • Staten Island Railroad (here called Staten Island Rapid Transit line) stations to be extended to support four-car trains from three)
  • Capital plan included $260mil to replace IRT and BMT power systems
    • Failures cause trains to stall or travel slowly when power is low
  • They refer to the capital plan as a "bailout"
  • "Fare-box revenues must, in the end, cover most of the principle and interest on the MTA bonds. Thus, depending on how high interest rates are when the bonds are sold, a fare hike may be necessary."
  • Ravitch says state reneged on a promise to pay the last installment on a fifteen-year-old Transportation Bond Issue, costing the MTA $90mil
    • I guess this was from 1967?
    • City's annual capital contribution also cut by Koch by $65mil (only a year after hiking it by $65mil)
  • $7.9bil capital plan breakdown
    • $3.6bil from new MTA bonds
    • $800mil from Triborough bonds
    • $800mil from new state bond package "guaranteed by the promise of 35 additional years of generous transit aid from Albany"
    • $1.3bil from federal aid
    • $500mil from state aid
    • $400mil from city aid
    • $400mil from "leaseback" <-- safe harbor leasing thingy
  • Ravitch says it's difficult to attract good workers when diesel mechanic working for the city gets paid 30% more than one working for the TA
  • Koch appointed Ross Sandler as the "new transit watchdog"
    • not sure what statute this resulted from
  • Source: nymag
  • Tags: articles capital-plan mta

Still to Read

"The Man at the Wheel of the M.T.A." - Ravitch in New York Magazine

  • Date: February 1, 1982
  • "A Nelson A. Rockefeller creation, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority was set up in 1968 to coordinate public transit and insulate the mayor and governor from complaints about fare increases."
  • Under Ronan, fares rose from 20 cents to 35
  • David L. Yunich was appointed by Malcom Wilson to succeed Ronan, and oversaw fare increases from 35 cents to 50
  • Harold Fisher was appointed by Carey in 1977, saw no fare increases, but oversaw deferred maintenance programs
  • Source: nymag
  • Tags: articles mta ravitch

Governance Assessment of MTA Capital Program Mega Projects

  • Date: November 2010
  • Capital Program Oversight Committee (CPOC) consists of MTA board members
  • Independent Engineering Consultant (IEC) exists to help CPOC understand technical parts of capital projects
  • MTAHQ Office of Construction Oversight (OCO) manages the IEC
  • IEC is presently (2010) under a $7mil annual contract with MTAHQ
  • MTA created MTA Capital Construction (MTACC) to oversee SAS, EAS, Fulton Center, 7 line extension
  • Source: mtaoig
  • Tags: mta reports

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