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MTA To Hire 500 Police Officers, Despite Growing Deficit

Seth Wenig

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority plans to hire 500 additional officers. The proposal comes as the MTA nears a budget deficit of nearly $1 billion in the next few years.

The Authority wants to increase its police force by 65%. They say a greater police presence would improve customer experience and keep major crime to a minimum on Metro-North and Long Island Rail Road.

The police would also serve New York City’s bus and subway systems.

Officials say the police force could help address concerns from commuters about homelessness, panhandlers and drug use at some stations.

The MTA wants to have 200 new officers on the job before the end of the year.

The new jobs would cost an estimated $260 million over four years.

A native Long Islander, J.D. is WSHU's managing editor. He also hosts the climate podcast Higher Ground. J.D. reports for public radio stations across the Northeast, is a journalism educator and proud SPJ member.