Saturday, July 26, 2008

MTA paid clerks to 'work' in idle stations

BY PETE DONOHUE
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER

Token booth clerks collected about $1 million since 2000 for working overnight shifts at two Harlem stations - where no trains run during those hours.

Between midnight and dawn, seven days a week, clerks have been stationed in their cubicles at the 145th St. and 148th St. stations even though the No. 3 train didn't run during those hours.

NYC Transit announced Thursday that the service will resume at those stops Sunday, 13 years after it was halted for low ridership.

A spokesman for NYC Transit yesterday said clerks have been on duty as a deterrent against vandalism, and to unlock turnstiles if an emergency ever required a train be rerouted to one of the depots.

Such a lack of productivity, even by just a few workers, bolsters critics' claims that there's a lot of fat left to trim before yet another proposed fare hike should be considered.

Mayor Bloomberg Friday repeated he wouldn't support proposed fare hikes until he sees more efficiency by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

"I want to see the MTA cut their expenses," Bloomberg said on his radio show. "New York City has been cutting its expenses. Everyone of our city agencies has learned to do more with less. Are they happy about it? No. But if you tell them this is the thing you've got to do, they do it."

Bloomberg sounded a similar theme last year before directing his four representatives on the MTA board to vote for a fare increase that went into effect in March.

NYC Transit stopped overnight service to the Harlem stations in 1995. It staffed booths there part-time for five years before resuming 24-hour staffing because of vandalism, a spokesman said.

Clerks make up to $23 per hour, and three would be needed to fill overnight shifts seven days a week.

MTA CEO Elliot Sander has said the authority is becoming more efficient, cutting so-called controllable expenses by 6% over four years.

The Daily News reported Friday that bus managers using new computer systems to better manage the scheduling and deployment of drivers expect to cut overtime by nearly 19,000 hours next year.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

MTA

Money Thrown Away

Taxpayer said...

And Commissar Death and Taxes still wants to force his Congestion Tax on us to force us to use mass transit.

The mass transit system is more of a sewer system. Full of shit.