New York Public Transit Association Hosts Transit Awareness Day

ALBANY, NY (02/03/2015) - Albany, NY (February 3, 2015) –Transit managers, riders, labor and businesses convened today for Transit Awareness Day, at The Well of the Legislative Office Building (LOB) in Albany. The two-day event emphasizes the public transit industry's value to New York State's economy and underscores the need for the state to make the investment necessary to preserve public transit's value to the communities it serves.

"We have a very important story to tell", said Carm Basile, President of the New York Public Transit Association. "We meet an ever-growing demand for service, create jobs and contribute significantly to economic growth, but the preliminary state budget is flat for public transit outside of the MTA."

NYPTA partners with the New York State Transportation Equity Alliance (NYSTEA), a coalition of environmental and rider advocacy groups, the Transit Workers Union (TWU), and business partners in urging the State to make the investment in public transportation that has such wide-ranging benefits.

"Government, business, labor and the public all have a vested interest in a healthy, robust public transit system" said Basile. "Keeping transit systems operating, turning over the aging equipment and solidifying the infrastructure make that happen, and we simply need the state to take the lead on this important infrastructure issue."

State Senators Joseph Robach (R, Rochester) and Martin Dilan (D, Brooklyn), Assemblyman James Brennan (D, Brooklyn), and New York State DOT Commissioner Joan McDonald spoke to the rallying transit supporters, along with Veronica Vanterpool, Executive Director, Tri-State Transportation Campaign, Kevin Dawson, Regional Sales Manager, Nova Bus, , Dave Delforte, Sales Managers, Shepard Bros. Inc. and Latonya Crisp-Sauray, Recording Secretary, TWU Local 100.

In addition to the rally, Transit Awareness Day included meetings with lawmakers, a legislative reception and presentation, and industry displays.

The New York public transit industry includes more than 110 transit systems, which collectively provide more than 3.8 billion transit rides annually. Public transit systems, operating in nearly every county, provide safe, economical, and environmentally friendly alternatives to driving. In so doing, they provide real economic value by connecting people to jobs and offering real environmental benefits.

About NYPTA

The New York Public Transit Association, Inc. (NYPTA) is a not-for-profit association of public transportation service providers, private sector manufacturers and consultants, and state government agencies. The Association was formed in 1983 by representatives of the transit industry committed to the advancement of public transportation in New York State. After more than 30 years of operation, NYPTA remains devoted to public transportation development and representing the mass transportation needs of the riding public.

NYPTA members consist of upstate and downstate systems in rural, suburban, city, and large metropolitan localities, and account for 28 percent of all transit rides in the country.

About NYSTEA

The New York State Transportation Equity Alliance (NYSTEA) is a coalition of over 75 groups across New York State working to reform federal and state transportation policy. NYSTEA is coordinated by Empire State Future, Tri-State Transportation Campaign, UPROSE and WE ACT- combining regional land use planning, environmental justice and transportation policy experience.