Next Recession Could Leave New York’s MTA ‘Particularly Vulnerable’

Commuters on the New York subway.

Commuters on the New York subway. Shutterstock

 

Connecting state and local government leaders

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Okla. first to pursue nitrogen hypoxia executions; sunken island property dispute in N.C.; 2 police sketches, same fake cop?; a push for even stronger quake codes in Calif.

Here are state and local government news stories that caught Route Fifty’s attention ...

INFRASTRUCTURE | Moody’s Investor Services delivered some unwelcome news regarding the fiscal stability of New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the state agency that operates the New York City Subway and the Long Island and Metro-North commuter railroads: A recession would leave the agency “particularly vulnerable,” Moody’s said on Wednesday. According to Baye Larsen, Moody's vice president and senior analyst: “If steep fare increases and service cuts proved politically unpalatable, a recession scenario budget gap would require external support from MTA's parent government, the state, and key partners, the city and federal government.” S&P Global Ratings downgraded the MTA’s bond rating from A+ to AA- on Monday. [New York Daily News; amNY]

In more bad news for the nation’s most-populous city and metropolitan area, the Gateway Program—the package of rail tunnel, bridge and track improvements in New York City and New Jersey considered by many to be the nation’s most pressing infrastructure need—continues to face opposition from President Trump. According to U.S. Rep. Peter King, Speaker Paul Ryan “described Trump as totally opposed to helping fund the $30 billion infrastructure project.” The speaker doesn’t want Gateway to cause Trump to veto an omnibus spending bill. [Politico]

California State Assemblyman Adrin Nazarian has introduced legislation to improve seismic building codes in the state so new buildings that are built in a way they’re habitable and functional following a major earthquake. Current seismic codes in California are designed to prevent buildings from suffering catastrophic collapses during a major quake. But that doesn’t mean that those structures won’t sustain heavy damage. Nazarian’s legislation is designed with long-term post-quake resiliency in mind. "If new buildings need to be demolished and rebuilt, you can imagine that, in a place like downtown L.A., what a standstill the economy will come to, and how many years it will take to rebuild and how daunting and taxing it will be," the Los Angeles Democrat said. [Los Angeles Times]

The Oklahoma State Capitol in Oklahoma City (Shutterstock)

STATE LEGISLATURES | Facing an April 2 strike deadline from teachers, Oklahoma senators on Wednesday night came close to securing a 12.7 percent pay increase for educators but failed to pass a tax package to pay for it. The Oklahoma Education Association argued that 12.7 percent proposal wasn’t enough of an increase and the revenue plan that was floated “simply wasn't good enough.” [Tulsa World; Oklahoma Education Association / Facebook]

California state lawmakers will be considering net neutrality legislation that would be, “the first state-level bill that would comprehensively secure all of the net neutrality protections that Americans currently enjoy,” according to Stanford University law professor Barbara van Schewick. [Ars Technica]

Delaware House lawmakers voted on Wednesday to move new gun-control bills from a committee to the full chamber for consideration. [Delaware State News]

State lawmakers in Rhode Island are looking to take some of the sting out of local school-zone speed cameras. In a bill, first-time offenders would get a warning instead of a citation and camera warning signs would need flashing lights. [Providence Journal]

IT MANAGEMENT | State agencies in Oregon have been experiencing major problems with a phone system and state procurement officials have expressed their displeasure with IBM, the contractor that built and installed the system, called Project MUSIC. [Willamette Week]

LAW ENFORCEMENT | Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter and Corrections Director Joe Allbaugh announced Wednesday that the Sooner State would turn to nitrogen hypoxia for executions in the death penalty chamber. If the method withstands legal challenges, Oklahoma would be the first state to use inert gas inhalation in executions. [Oklahoma Watch; The Oklahoman]

Two police agencies in the Atlanta area have released separate sketches of a man accused of impersonating a police officer and sexually assaulting drivers during traffic stops. Because there are two sketches, one released by the Atlanta Police Department and another from the Cobb County Police Department, there may be two different men involved in the crimes. But it may be just one person, too. “We tend to notice different things when it comes to facial recognition of people,” said Cobb County Police Sgt. Wayne Delk. [Atlanta Journal-Constitution]

LAND DISPUTE | A Virginia man is undeterred in his claim that he owns an island that sank below the waters off North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Ken Barlow says that part of what was Shelly Island has now merged with Cape Point. “I will NEVER relinquish what I own to the National Park Service. I will defend that property with the necessary force to repel invaders, such as the NPS.... Dare County Records of Deeds says I own this property. End of story,” Barlow said in a email to The Charlotte Observer. The National Park Service never conceded that Barlow owned the 27-acre island before it vanished. [The Charlotte Observer]

PUBLIC WORKS | After a series of big Nor’easter storms brought major snowfall and coastal flooding in recent weeks to parts of the mid-Atlantic and New England, public works agencies are preparing for what could be another big late-season storm next week. “Keep in mind this threat is 6 days out and is far from a certainty along with potential precipitation types,” according to the National Weather Service in Boston, where snow-removal operations continue.

[Capital Weather Gang / The Washington Post; Boston.com; @BostonPWD]

Michael Grass is Executive Editor of Government Executive's Route Fifty and is based in Seattle.

FEATURED CASE STUDIES
Powered By The Atlas
Crowdfunding Capital for Sustainable Wastewater P3 Project in Los Fresnos, TX
Los Fresnos, TX 78566, USA
Integrating Complete and Green Streets for Climate-Resilient Sustainable Streets
San Mateo County, CA, USA
Major improvements in Service issue resolution at St. Catharines Transit
2012 First Street Louth, St. Catharines, ON L2S 3V9, Canada

NEXT STORY: Tax Reform Hurt Affordable Housing. This Bill Could Bring Some Back.

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.