Monday, December 17, 2007

The Waste At The MTA

With two days to go until the MTA board officially raises our fares to commute in New York, the Daily News publishes a bombshell investigation showing the glut that can be found across the MTA. The redundant costs, multiple executives and a ridiculous amount of lawyers employed and contracted out shows how despite the board wanting more of New Yorkers' money, they fail to save in some of the easiest ways possible.

From The Daily News:

The records show that in the coming year the agency plans to expand the number of jobs from 69,973 to 70,469. In subsequent years the number of jobs will be reduced by a tiny amount - 138 - leaving the number of workers still above the current level.

Consider this:

  • Instead of one president, there are eight - the MTA chief and seven agencies.
  • Instead of one chief financial officer, there are six CFOs.
  • Instead of a central staff, each agency has its own lawyers, auditors and payroll clerks.

That is just the overview, those eight Presidents make between $178 and $340K. They're given housing deferments as part of their salaries even though they live close by to their jobs. Many more employees do the same jobs only in a different office. The duplicative nature of the MTA is a well recognized problem, so what did they do about it? They employed a director for $120K to find a solution last year and there won't even be a report issued until next year.

Maybe it takes so long because of all the lawyers telling him or her what is legal and what is not. One hundred and twelve lawyers are spread out across the transit authorities doing god knows what. Their $12 million dollar cost was supplemented by millions more from outside law firms.

The glut is just overwhelming. Now we're expected to pay for this? Absolutely ridiculous!