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 plan to put Walder in front of their committees before any decision is made. Kruger, for his part, tells The Daily Politics that he doesn’t consider the backbone of the region’s economy to be a particularly urgent agenda item.

"We’ll look at it over the course of the next couple of months," said
Kruger. … "After that, we’ll finish our vetting process, which hasn’t even
begun yet, and we’ll have a better idea about the timetable (for a
confirmation vote)."

When Liz Benjamin informed Kruger that Walder has already spoken of restoring public trust in the agency — a task that will be much more difficult thanks to shameless hucksters like Kruger himself, the senator replied:

"I come from Missouri; don’t show me, tell me. I mean, everybody says
they’re for oversight and accountability. What does that mean? What
does it mean?
"

I swear, this blog just writes itself sometimes.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

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 […]

State Senate on Transit Funding Meltdown: It Wasn’t Us

|
After omitting bridge tolls from last spring’s transit funding package, then raiding the "piggy bank" to the tune of $143 million, Albany’s neglect of the MTA has left millions of transit-dependent New Yorkers in the lurch. Yet lawmakers have shown no inclination to get to work patching the agency’s ever-widening budget hole, much less coming […]

Today’s Headlines

|
Next Fare Hike Could Be 4.5 Times Bigger, Thanks to MTA’s Looming Debt Bomb (Reuters) Unlicensed Dump Truck Driver Killed Laurence Renard as She Crossed First Ave. (News, Post) Drunk Dump Truck Driver Hit ‘Nick’ Sundarawadu as He Refueled on Side of Road (News, Advance) Carl Kruger Keeps Pushing to Ban Pedestrians From Using Headphones, Cell Phones (AP) […]

MTA Doomsday Hotline: How to Reach Your State Senator

|
If you’re having a "mad as hell" kind of morning and want to channel your frustration over imminent doomsday fare hikes and service cuts, here’s where you can track down the number for your state senator’s Albany office. Those in the Union Square area can also drop by Transportation Alternatives’ phone-a-thon, which will be going […]

Give Espada and Monserrate the “Oil Slick” Award

|
It would be nice to shame every member of the Fare Hike Four, but we’ll settle for the two on the right. Thanks to the folks at the Tri-State Transportation Campaign for pointing us to this excellent survey from EPL/Environment Advocates. State Senators Pedro Espada and Hiram Monserrate are finalists for the "Oil Slick" award, […]