Statement of the New York City Transit Riders Council to the
Committee on Transportation of the New York City Council
on Minor Holiday Subway Service Reduction
September 26, 2011
My name is William Henderson and I serve as Executive Director of the New York City Transit Riders Council (NYCTRC). The NYCTRC, which was established in 1981, is the legislatively mandated representative of New York City Transit riders, created by the State Legislature in 1981 to represent the users of the New York City Transit system. The Council consists of fifteen volunteer members appointed by the Governor upon the recommendation of the Mayor, the Public Advocate and the five Borough Presidents.
First, I want to take the opportunity to thank all those at New York City Transit for their extraordinary efforts in preparing for Hurricane Irene and bringing the system back into service after the storm had passed. While the storm was not as severe as it could have been, the professionalism of Transit personnel inspires confidence that our subway and bus systems are up to whatever challenges they may face. Truly a job well done.
At this meeting you are presenting as an information item a plan to reduce A division subway service on minor holidays and less heavily traveled days near major holidays. This follows on the implementation of light riding schedules on the 1 and 6 lines this summer. While we do not suggest that NYC Transit should run more service than is needed to reasonably accommodate travel demands, we would like to see similar emphasis on restoring service where it is appropriate. There are still a number of riders who were severely inconvenienced by last year’s service cuts and who continue to have difficulties traveling by transit as a result. We can only hope that the same level of effort that has gone into reducing service during periods of light demand will also be expended to find opportunities to restore needed service.