Has the MTA forgotten Staten Island?

The Island Now

Re: “Has the MTA Forgotten Staten Island,” 10/05/2020: the author’s letter is truly all over the place.
First, the author states that Staten Island is forgotten when it comes to capital improvement, and cites two express bus projects linking points in Staten Island to the ferry.

Then he states funding assumptions for the MTA’s Capital Plan were unrealistic but doesn’t state how. Then he states thanks to the economic recession because of COVID-19 billions have disappeared and Staten Island remains forgotten.

Then the author states the MTA never had any funding to begin with for the $51 billion capital improvement plan. The author then states the MTA’s request for an additional $12 billion in COVID funding has nothing to do with the Staten Island projects. Then he says $12 billion in funding could help preserve the MTA’s 5 year Capital Plan.
The author’s feelings toward the $12 billion bailout have been published in virtually every media outlet in the tristate area: he is dead set against it.

The author feels the MTA’s fiscal issues are mismanagement, not lost revenue due to COVID. He is also against it because he feels it would add to the Federal deficit.
Not mentioned by the author, a Great Neck resident, is how the people of Staten Island feel about this project.

Have any public opinion polls been conducted asking residents how they feel about the aforementioned bus projects? Do the residents of Staten Island want to relinquish their automobiles?

Do they want their taxes increased, which is certain to happen should these projects proceed? The author also fails to mention that there is a “subway” in Staten Island, the Staten Island Railroad.

How does that affect the justification for these projects?
So to summarize. Even though there is no mention of any public opinion polls, the people of Staten Island should have these two bus links.

The author is against the MTA bailout but feels it could help preserve the five-year capital plan. Funding assumptions for the five-year plan were unrealistic but we’re not told how. Even though the COVID recession has affected everything everywhere it is somehow singling out Staten Island.

Nat Weiner


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