As CBS2’s Marcia Kramer reported, Cuomo has made no secret about wanting de Blasio to cough up more dough for mass transit. But his latest demand came with a special twist of the knife, since it’s common knowledge there’s no love lost between de Blasio and the man he replaced, Michael Bloomberg.
“Mike Bloomberg invested in the MTA, and it was an investment that I think is going to go down in his legacy as one of the smartest moves he’s made as mayor,” Cuomo said on WNYC radio. “I think the same thing should happen for this mayor.”
Bloomberg is arguably de Blasio’s Achilles’ heel. De Blasio has led the charge to deny Bloomberg a third term, and he’s gone to great lengths to be the anti-Bloomberg in governing the city.
So demanding that de Blasio be more like his predecessor was a Cuomo jab guaranteed to provoke, irritate and annoy.
Cuomo has pledged $8.3 billion in state money for new subway cars and buses, station upgrades and new projects such as the Second Avenue subway. He said the city should contribute $3.2 billion over five years.
The mayor says he won’t ante up anything extra unless the state meets certain conditions.
“New Yorkers are tired of the bickering and politics,” said de Blasio spokeswoman Amy Spitalnick. “It’s past time for the state to get real: Tell New Yorkers where your money is coming from.”
But the MTA said that if the city doesn’t pay its fair share, there will be dollar-for-dollar cuts matching whatever the city doesn’t contribute.
There are a lot of potential cuts.
“The biggest, most obvious target would be extending the Second Avenue subway to East Harlem,” MTA spokesman Adam Lisberg said. “That’s the easiest thing to take off the table.
“Right now, we plan to buy almost 1,000 subway cars in the next system to replace some of the old ones. If we don’t have that, what’s the price to New Yorkers who are going to be rolling along on old subway cars for the next five years?”