“Despite the passage of congestion pricing, today’s comments from Governor Cuomo and his office raise extremely serious concerns about the MTA’s finances. The MTA has already borrowed a huge amount of money and debt payments are soaring into the red zone. That means riders have to pay more just to repay old debt.
Here’s why we’re worried: before any new borrowing, the MTA estimates its debt payments will go up by about 20% in the next three years. (From $2.69B in 2019 to $3.223B in 2022 — this is about six times the rate of inflation.) Today, the governor’s office implied in a written statement that the MTA will have to borrow upwards of at least $20 to $30B to continue rebuilding the subways, buses and commuter rail.
On top of this, the state already owes the $7.5B in state funds for the current, 2015-2019, capital plan and we and many other long-time observers believe there is a real risk Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders will renege on this commitment.