New York State County Highway Superintendents Association News & Views



Tuesday, November 6, 2018

NYS Transit Industry News

NYPTA President Calls on Officials for Greater Investment in Public Transit 

A commentary by NYPTA President Bill Carpenter, CEO of RTS, was published in the Albany Times Union October 30, citing, "Even casual followers of state politics this election season know that the New York City subway is in crisis, and every candidate has an idea about how to fix it.

"This makes both political and logical sense: Public transit is the lifeblood of the nation's and state's largest city and our economic center. When the trains don't run on time, New York City doesn't run on time.

"The same is true upstate. When the buses don't run on time, neither do Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Albany and cities that are served by transit operators of all sizes."


Schumer, Gillibrand Announce $11 Million In Federal Funding For The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority In Buffalo For New Buses 

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $11 million in federal funding for the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority (NFTA), which operates in Erie and Niagara Counties. The funding was provided through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and will be used to purchase modern and less-polluting Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses. Schumer previously wrote to the Department of Transportation in support of NFTA’s application for funding to buy new CNG buses.

“Transit service is a lifeline for many Western New York residents, and this new vital funding will allow the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority to purchase brand spanking new, fuel efficient, Compressed Natural Gas buses to provide riders with a safe and efficient ride and help the environment all at the same time,” said Senator Schumer. “I fought tooth and nail to help create this funding stream because investment in transportation infrastructure is critical for residents and businesses. I will continue to work to ensure that the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority and other transit agencies across New York have the funding they need to move from dirty diesel to cleaner CNG and to modernize their fleets so commuters can have a safer, faster and more efficient ride.”

“Bus transit is a vital form of travel for many New Yorkers, and this federal funding will be used to purchase new, fuel efficient buses to serve the communities in Erie and Niagara counties,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This is a major investment that will help strengthen our transportation infrastructure, making service more efficient for commuters while reducing air pollution.”





State Government Affairs 

Governor Cuomo Issues Letter to EPA Condemning
Proposed Emission Rules

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo last week issued a letter to Environmental Protection Agency Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler condemning two proposed emission rules that will have devastating impacts to public health and the environment, including the Safer Affordable Fuel Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles proposal and the Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) proposal.

The Governor enclosed in his letter the State's formal comments objecting to the ACE proposal as part of the public comment period, which closes today. The State submitted formal comments objecting to the SAFE proposal on Friday, the final day of the public comment period for that proposed rule.


Around the Country

New Report Says Stagnant Funding For Public Transit Has Limited Wisconsin's Transportation Options

A new report on Wisconsin's public transportation systems says inadequate funding has prevented many communities from expanding service.

Nine nonprofit organizations in the state reviewed U.S. Census data, local transit reports and interviewed riders for the two-year study.

Cassie Steiner, public relations associate for the Wisconsin John Muir Chapter of the Sierra Club and one of the authors of the report, said the project revealed gaps in most transit systems around the state.

"Public transportation systems are not necessarily connecting where people live or where there are low income areas, which experience lower rates of car ownership, to where opportunities were," Steiner said.

Steiner said officials at nine transit systems studied by the group were working hard to provide the best service with available funding.


Will People Choose a Ridehailing Subscription Over a Car Payment?

Lyft’s monthly subscription experiment is going national. The ride-hailing company has been tinkering with subscriptions since earlier this year, and it’s now ready to roll it out to a much wider market. Ultimately, Lyft has high hopes of being grouped together with subscription powerhouses like Netflix or Amazon, especially as it gears up for an initial public offering in 2019.

So how does it work? Right now, riders who sign up for Lyft’s “All-Access Plan” for $299 a month get 30 rides costing up to $15 each. If a ride costs more than $15, the rider pays the difference. Other than that, it works like a normal Lyft ride. The plan applies to only some of the modes of transportation offered by Lyft — single-passenger trips and carpooling, but not bikes and scooters yet — but unused rides don’t roll over to the following period. For a limited time, All-Access Plan subscribers will also get 5 percent off of all additional rides.


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United States

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