Transportation for Massachusetts Responds to Secretary Davey’s Remarks: The MBTA has Created a False Choice

Richard Davey Swearing In
Office of Governor Patrick / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Transportation for Massachusetts Responds to Secretary Davey’s Remarks: The MBTA has Created a False Choice
Date Published: Friday, January 27, 2012

T4MA
Transportation for Massachusetts
Contact: Karen Wood, CLF, 978-857-5289
Rafael; Mares, CLF, 617-850-1739

January 27, 2012

For Immediate Release

PRESS RELEASE

Transportation for Massachusetts Responds to Secretary Davey’s Remarks:
The MBTA has Created a False Choice

BOSTON, MA January 27, 2012 – Transportation for Massachusetts (T4MA) today issued the following statement in response to Massachusetts Transportation Secretary Davey’s recent remarks regarding the MBTA’s proposed service cuts and fare increases. Speaking on behalf of T4MA, Conservation Law Foundation staff attorney Rafael Mares said that Secretary Davey’s remarks were disappointing, if not surprising. “The MBTA has created a false choice between draconian service cuts and drastic fare increases. The reality is it’s a lose-lose situation for transit users and Massachusetts.”

“The MBTA has backed transit users against a wall, asking them to choose between two unacceptable scenarios,” said Conservation Law Foundation’s Rafael Mares, speaking on behalf of Transportation for Massachusetts. “A fare increase may seem like the lesser of two evils to those who have a choice. But, what about those who can’t afford the increases and won’t be able to get to their jobs, or school, or a doctor’s appointment because they rely on public transportation? The MBTA has created a false choice between draconian service cuts and drastic fare increases. The reality is it’s a lose-lose situation for transit users and Massachusetts. If Secretary Davey is hearing a chorus of ‘I would rather pay more but not cut the service,’ it wasn’t singing at any of the hearings we’ve been attending.”

Mares continued, “The proposed fare increases and service cuts are unfair and only a band-aid. The MBTA’s proposals give the legislature a free pass, balancing the books solely on the backs of the riders. These proposed measures will push people off the T and into their cars, or leave them without any transportation at all. We need long-term solutions that share the burden of a working transportation system among everyone who benefits from it, which is to say everyone in Massachusetts. T4MA is calling on the legislature and the administration to immediately identify funds to reduce the T’s projected deficit and develop adequate, sustainable funding for transportation so we’re not repeating this conversation again next year.”

Transportation for Massachusetts (T4MA), a diverse coalition of Bay State organizations, seeks to promote an environmentally sustainable, reliable, and affordable transportation system for people across the Commonwealth. T4MA believes that a strong and competitive Massachusetts economy requires a transportation system that supports and connects communities while reducing greenhouse gases and other pollution and providing greater choices to users of the state’s rails and roads. Through research, advocacy, and organizing, T4MA works to spur investment in transportation improvements and to obtain the best return on those investments to travelers and taxpayers. T4MA members promote better transportation, regional planning, affordable housing development, public health, environmental protection, environmental justice, and smart growth.

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Key Issues:

* Public Transit
* MBTA
* Transportation Finance

Coalition Members:

* Conservation Law Foundation

Working Group:

* State Policy Working Group