Nicole Gelinas has a piece in the New York Post today skewering state Senate Republicans for passing a bill that would repeal the payroll tax in the Metropolitan Transportation Region without offering a solid plan for closing the holes in the MTA operating and capital budgets. Her view is summed up in the headline: “State Senate’s pathetic posturing.”
If the GOP were serious, it would address union-labor costs. In three years, MTA pension and health costs will rise 30 percent. It’s not just a city issue; suburban railroad workers enjoy benefits not available in the private sector.
But in Wednesday’s debate [before passing the tax repeal bill], senators talked everything from MTA “mob infiltration” to “criminal accounting” to whether tax-paying is “patriotic.” Nobody said that the MTA’s workers should pay more for health care, saving $150 million, or that pensions for new workers should be less generous.