Fare Hike Four Looking Out for Number One

If you’re tracking the progress of MTA rescue talks, Jimmy Vielkind’s Albany dispatches at the Politicker are a must-read. I had to highlight this exchange he had yesterday with Fare Hike Four member Pedro Espada, Jr., which pretty much sums up the current predicament:

I asked for this thoughts.

"I’m elated," he said. "Today’s a great day for Pedro Espada, the M.T.A. ridership and the State Senate."

I asked if I should read anything into him listing his own name
before the M.T.A ridership. He slapped me on the back and replied "only
that you’re very imaginative."

  • Grotesque.

    I thought the “Authority” in “MTA” was supposed to remove it political machinations. What a joke.

  • It was supposed to remove it from political pressure to keep the fare down, Rhywun. Nothing about the authority structure was intended to maintain service levels; it was the merger with the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority that was supposed to do that.

  • “They’re punting for another year,” [Senator Martin Golden] said. “That’s irresponsible for the taxpayers of the City of New York it’s irresponsible for the Senate not to be able to come to a conclusion and do their jobs. They are not functioning; they are not doing the jobs the taxpayers sent them here to do.”

    News to you, Marty: you’re a member of that body. More than 40% of the households in your district have no cars. More than half of your constituents depend on transit. (PDF) If you got together ten of your fellow Republican senators (like maybe Senator Padavan from Queens, Lanza from Staten Island, Fuschillo, Skelos, Owen Johnson, Hannon and LaValle from Long Island, Morahan from Rockland, Larkin from Orange, and Saland from Dutchess, all of whom represent parts of the MTA district), then that’s plenty to overcome these four clowns. But I guess you’d rather play politics?

  • I missed another Long Island Republican Senator: Carl Marcellino. Really, if Golden, Padavan and Lanza can find two more senators from their own party on Long Island or in the Hudson Valley, or even otherwise pro-transit guys like Libous, they could pass bridge tolls and keep the MTA afloat for a while. But mean ol’ man Smith took away their television studio, so they’re not playing with him any more.

    If Diaz, Kruger, Espada and Monserrate are the Four Stooges, what about these twelve?


Fare Hike Four to Paterson: Not So Fast

In case you’ve forgotten who’s in charge these days, Governor Paterson’s nomination of Jay Walder to succeed Lee Sander as MTA chief was quickly met with a joint statement from Malcolm Smith, John Sampson, and Fare Hike Four members Pedro Espada and Carl Kruger. In the interest of "transparency and accountability," the senators say they […]

Will the Fare Hike Four Face Pro-Transit Primary Challengers?

Last week we profiled Igor Oberman, the challenger gunning to unseat State Senator Carl Kruger this September who’s made support for transit, including bridge tolls, a centerpiece of his campaign. So, what’s going on with the other three members of the Fare Hike Four — Pedro Espada, Rubén Díaz Sr., and Hiram Monserrate. Their anti-transit […]

Kruger, Espada, and Diaz Leave MTA Rescue on Life Support

The three city reps who nearly derailed the Democratic takeover of the State Senate have issued a joint statement declaring — transit riders be damned — they’re not going to support bridge tolls. Liz Benjamin at the Daily Politics has the story: The Three Amigos — Sens. Carl Kruger, Pedro Espada Jr. and Ruben Diaz […]

The Four Stooges

OK, we have a winner of yesterday’s photo caption contest. Democratic State Senators Hiram Monserrate, Carl Kruger, Pedro Espada, Jr. and Ruben Diaz, Sr. will henceforth be known as "The Fare Hike Four." While we’re at it, we figure if the State Senate is going to treat New York City’s transit riders like clowns and […]