June 19, 2012
By Ray Parker, Staff Writer
In the waning days of the legislative session, Assemblyman Jim Brennan (D-Park Slope), Chair of the Committee on Corporations, Authorities, and Commissions, drafted a bill that would force the MTA to come clean on all service cuts since 2008, detail how many commuters were affected, and cost out each service restoration, line by line. Brennan's bill, http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?sh=printbill&bn=A10542&term=2011 was co-sponsored by 19 Assembly Members, including allies of transit and union causes from both sides of the aisle such as Nicole Malliotakis, Peter Abbate, and Cathy Nolan. It was passed unanimously by the Assembly on June 18. But Senate passage is uncertain.
Brennan co-sponsored the MTA "lock box" bill in the last session with Republican Marty Golden, only to see it "eviscerated" by Governor Cuomo in the final rounds of horse trading last year. Will Brennan be able to carry this new 'reporting requirement' legislation to victory? TWU Local 100 is pushing for a Senate co-sponsor and quick passage before the session ends. Will Senator Golden rise to the occasion? Can legislators smarting from transit cuts to their constituents ensure that the MTA "makes every dollar count"? In a few days, we'll know the answer.