Mayor Proposes Plan To Tax City’s Wealthiest To Fund MTA Repairs

Mayor Proposes Plan To Tax City’s Wealthiest To Fund MTA Repairs

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a plan to tax the wealthiest New Yorkers to fund much-needed repairs and improvements to the city’s troubled MTA system.

The mayor’s proposed plan would raise income taxes from 3.87% to 4.41% for New York individuals earning more than $500,000 and couples earning more than $1 million. The tax would effect approximately 32,000 people, according to the New York Daily News.

The plan would be a long-term solution, generating $800 million annually for the MTA, the paper says.

The additional funds would also go toward Fair Fares, a program providing half-price subway and bus fares that would benefit approximately 800,000 low-income New Yorkers, the report states.

The tax increase would generate approximately $500 million a year for capital upgrades for city subways and buses as well as $250 million for the Fair Fares program, the Daily News says.

The mayor’s announcement comes shortly after MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota unveiled his $836 million emergency plan to repair the system last month. Lhota wants the city to pay for half of this hefty sum.

De Blasio’s plan will need to be approved by New York State lawmakers. NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer said that the plan is worth exploring but warns, “Before we get too optimistic, people have to recognize that…New York City has a serious political problem in the state Senate,” according to a WNYC and AP report.

“We deserve a sensible and sustainable solution to our city’s subway crisis, one that does not additionally burden the most economically strained among us who have already contributed so much to this mass transit system while receiving diminishing returns in safe, reliable service,” Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said in a statement. “We deserve a fair fix.”

NYC Council Member Brad Lander tweeted his support of the mayor’s plan. Lander will attend a City Council hearing on improving the NYC subway system tomorrow, Tuesday, August 8 at City Hall.

In preparation for tomorrow’s meeting, the Council Member posted a questionnaire on his Facebook page asking commuters what their biggest problems with the subway are and how they think improvements should be prioritized and paid for.


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