Testimony Before the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Board Regarding Proposed Service Cuts on Manhattan Bus Lines on January 26, 2004
My name is Liz Krueger and I am the State Senator representing the 26thdistrict which includes the East Side and Midtown. I am here today to protest the decreases in service to several bus lines in my district and urge the board to delay a vote on these important changes until affected community boards and community groups have time to adequately review these cuts.
The M.T.A.’s proposed cuts will result in further deterioration of bus service in Midtown and the East Side. The authority has proposed cutting the number of buses dispatched to the M30, M31, M42, M57 and M104 lines in my district. These actions, which follow on the heals of cuts on the M15 and other lines last year will increase the time riders wait between buses, increase passenger boarding times and, consequently, increase ride times on the slowest bus system in the United States. While the M.T.A’s stated goal is to increase ridership system wide, decreasing service has never served as a catalyst to increase ridership.
Furthermore, the manner in which my office and local community groups have been notified of these changes has not allowed for an adequate comment period by affected riders, community groups, community boards and elected officials. This is why I am proposing that any decision regarding these changes be delayed until the next board meeting. Community boards in my district were not notified, leaving my office to do the work that should have been done by the authority. It is unconscionable that a change affecting so many New Yorkers would be passed in the eleventh hour with such insufficient time for community input. The M.T.A. must develop a better system of notification for service changes, so that affected communities have ample opportunity for input.
Thank you for the opportunity to testify.