Rockland lawmakers object to proposed Metro-North cuts
In Rockland, where many feel they pay more for Metro-North services than they get in return, two legsilators are planning “strong” objections to the latest plan to cut train runs.
The railroad’s parent agency, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, is looking at many mid-year service cuts, including ending free rides for New York City school children, to cover a budget shortfall.
Legislator Ed Day said Rockland should not be affected by the cuts because the county already gets shortchanged. Here’s his press release, quoting himself and Chairwoman of the Legislature Harriet Cornell:
New City, NY (January 11, 2010) – Rockland County Legislator Ed Day and Chairwoman of the Legislature Harriet Cornell will make a strong appeal to the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) to rescind proposed service cuts that would result in the elimination of two weekday trains and four weekend express trains on the Pascack Valley Line. The cuts would take place in the summer of 2010.
“We are painfully aware that the MTA receives $60 million more than Rockland commuters receive in value from the MTA,” said Legislator Day, “It is totally unacceptable for the MTA to propose eliminating any service from the Pascack Valley Line.”
The proposed service cuts would affect the weekday 4:56 a.m. inbound train from Spring Valley and the 6:55 p.m. outbound train from Hoboken. The four weekend trains affected are: the 9:27 a.m. and 11:37 a.m. inbound trains from Spring Valley and the 3:14 p.m. and 7:22 p.m. outbound trains from Hoboken.
“Our rail service is limited as is,” said Chairwoman Cornell, “and runs counter to the 2008 agreement between Metro North and New Jersey Transit to expand service. Consistency of service is what leads to increased usage by residents. Cutting rail service is destructive and sends the wrong message, as we try to convince people to take mass transit.”
Day and Cornell expect the full support of the legislative body. “Much time and energy has been spent to coax commuters and day trippers out of their cars and onto mass transit,” said Day, “These trains allow easy access for those who work off-peak hours. The MTA shows no remorse and continues to defy logic in their treatment of Rockland County.”