To answer one of the questions out of the County Executive's office, the Bee-Line buses don't need to be run by county government.
In fact, one of the fiscal arguments put forth by the MTA and other transportation organizations has been to include Westchester's busing operation as part of a broader multi-county regional authority that would assume the costs of public transportation in Westchester.
The Tri-State Transportation Campaign, Regional Plan Association, and DMJM Harris will be holding a forum on how regional bus would affect Westchester County on February 13 at 9 am, at the Radisson Hotel in New Rochelle (click for map).
Of course, the first reaction might be that few would want the MTA (Metropolitan Transit Authority) touching anything in suburbia.
But there has been a lot of merit to these ideas for decades, particularly given what many planning "experts" (not this blogger's favorite word) envision will be some form of tram or trains between Westchester and Rockland Counties.
It's not far fetched at all. It could save taxpayers a lot of money, especially since our State taxes and train fares already pay for a large chunk of the MTA's budget.
Speakers and panelists include State Assemblymember George Latimer; Mayors Noam Bramson, Drew Fixell, Mary Foster, and Dennis Pilla; Westchester DOT Commissioner Larry Salley; and bus rapid transit expert Walter Hook of the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy.
Regional bus is one of the recommendations in the Ravitch Commission’s report on funding and reforming the MTA. While some of the Ravitch funding recommendations, such as a payroll tax, have received significant public attention, regional bus has not.