Oh great: In light of the newly-discovered MTA $400 nillion budget shortfall because payroll tax revenues aren’t up to expectations, Mayor Bloomberg suggested during a Q&A that “the MTA is either going to have to raise rates dramatically or cut back service dramatically or, what’s more likely, some combination of the two.”
The MTA revisited the budget in December and instituted new reductions in bus and subway service, which have yet to take effect. They’re still holding hearings on doing away with student discount fares. It seems as if they’ve already cut a lot without reaching the bone, but they may be getting there.
The Authority’s finances are sufficiently dire that Chairman Jay Walder has admitted the MTA isn’t keeping the stations as clean as it used to. “During each financial downturn, the first thing to go is the cleaning and maintenance of the stations,” he says.