De Blasio, Cuomo and MTA battle over financing (again)

Stephon Johnson | 1/25/2018, midnight
“Under the 2015-2019 capital plan, New York City Transit receives 51 percent, and when you throw MTA buses in it, ...
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Under Cuomo’s Subway Action Plan, the state would provide $254 million in operating aid for their half of the plan that deals with customer service, delays, system failures and improvements. As part of the action plan, the state’s financial plan would include $175 million in new capital funding for the MTA.

One place the mayor and the governor almost meet is congestion pricing. Cuomo recently told WCBS Radio’s Michael Wallace of his plan to charge $11.52 for cars entering Manhattan south of 60th Street.

“We have new technology that we just developed,” said Cuomo. “You notice as you go into a bridge or tunnel in downstate New York, you don’t pay at a toll booth, it’s all electronic. We just put that in over the past couple of years. And it’s actually worked quite well. So we can put that technology anywhere. We can geographically circumscribe a central business district and put that electronic polling right around that district. It’s not going into Manhattan, it’s going into the congested part of Manhattan and ending to that congestion.”

Fuleihan said that the mayor is happy to participate in finding additional means of funding but also stated, “The mayor said his preference is the millionaire’s tax.”

But both sides remain divided over who is responsible for what part of the MTA. During the city’s conference call, Fuleihan and Carter insisted that the city doesn’t have a legal obligation to contribute to capital funds for the subway and said they’d send around legal backup for their stance. Carter also told reporters that New York City is only on the hook for a maximum of $5 million and it was capped via legislation in 1953. Carter said there is “no legal obligation on the part of the city to contribute more” and that what Cuomo is proposing is a tacit admission of what they’ve been saying.

Lhota said he looked forward to reading the memorandum.

When asked how Cuomo and the MTA will force the city to fork over funds for the capital plan, Lhota said “the legislation that’s being put forward by the executive budget would require them to do that.”