NYC mayor promote millionaires' tax to help fix transit woes

"That means fewer than 1 percent of New York City taxpayers", de Blasio said, adding, "For an individual making $1 million, that individual will pay about $2,700 more in taxes, about $7 a day".

The Times reports that would affect married couples who make more than $1 million a year and individuals earning more than $500,000 a year.

"With New York City sitting on a surplus that is north of $4 billion, the absolute last thing we should be talking about is raising taxes", Reif said in a statement Sunday, according to NY1.

"It's time to end a system where low-income New Yorkers have to skip meals, beg for swipes or even jump turnstiles in order to get to work or school", he said.

"The city should partner with us and match the state funding now so we can begin Chairman Lhota's overhaul plan immediately and move forward", Mr. Cuomo said in a statement.

"After saying the MTA doesn't need money, we're glad the Mayor reversed himself", said Joe Lhota, chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

All told, the tax would apply to an estimated 32,000 tax filers, less than one percent of the city's population, according to City Hall. "While it is constructive to focus discussion on the transit system's long-term capital needs, new funding streams to support these needs should come from motorists - who are not contributing their fair share to the MTA - through congestion pricing or other charges for motor vehicle use".

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Hey, as de Blasio says, what's "a little extra" among millionaires?

He also said the push for "Fair Fares" for low-income transit riders has never been so urgent.

The tax would reportedly raise more than $700 million a year, with more than $500 million allocated toward capital costs for subways and buses. The new funding would also be separate from the authority's short-term subway rescue plan, which city officials said should be paid for by returning money to the authority that the state had previously diverted. As more New Yorkers acknowledge Governor Cuomo's responsibility to the MTA, he reasoned, the governor will feel pressure to appease them.

A tax increase will require approval of state legislators.

The mayor's embrace of half-price MetroCards for poor New Yorkers comes after months of lobbying from transit advocates and could be a popular proposal as Mr.de Blasio runs for re-election in November. "We can not ask New Yorkers to wait one year to start repairs".

John Raskin, executive director of the Riders Alliance, was more receptive. With Republicans in control the New York Senate, the proposed surcharge could face opposition - but the magnitude of the problem has captured the attention of both parties in Albany, The New York Times reported Monday.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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