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Stories and information in our region on the COVID-19 pandemic.

MTA Chairman Predicts 'Horrific' Cuts Without Federal Aid

Patrick Cashin

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority says 2021 could bring drastic service cuts and thousands of layoffs unless the federal government sends help. The MTA plans to borrow billions of dollars to make it through the rest of 2020.

The MTA said the organization is facing the worst financial crisis in its history.

Next year’s budget includes steep cuts to subway service, the LIRR and Metro North — as much as 50%. That would leave nearly 9,400 MTA workers out of a job. Fare hikes and toll increases are also proposed.

MTA Chairman Patrick Foye called the cuts “horrific,” but says there’s no other option without federal relief. The MTA has asked the federal government for a $12 billion bailout.

The MTA plans to borrow $3 billion — but that’s to close this year’s budget.

Ridership dropped this spring due to the pandemic, and is still down about 70% compared to last year.

Desiree reports on the lives of military service members, veterans, and their families for WSHU as part of the American Homefront project. Born and raised in Connecticut, she now calls Long Island home.