New Yorkers rely on public transportation every day, but our current transit system does not work well for millions of working-class people. While New York City has the infrastructure to be a leader in creating a truly great transit system, our leadership lacks the vision and commitment to do so. This has led to disinvestment, over-policing, and neglect. As your next state senator in District 25, I promise to support, introduce, and fight for legislation that will make our transportation in our district — and across the city — more accessible and equitable for all.
As a state senator, I will fight for:
- Ending fines for fare evasion. The Cuomo-controlled MTA Board recently approved spending roughly $250M over the span of four years to hire 500 new subway cops and enforce fare evasion. This is wasteful and unnecessary spending, especially considering that crime has altogether decreased in public transit. More importantly, we should not prioritize public spending on an enforcement principle that criminalizes poverty and does not make anyone more safe. Instead, we need to at the very least decriminalize minor legal infractions, such as fare-hopping, by making that act a fine that is worth: no more than the price of a single fare ($2.75).
- Reducing police presence in our subway system. Governor Cuomo and his allies in the MTA have scaled-up police presence in our subways. Not only is this unnecessary, it is dangerous. The increased police presence has meant increased harassment for riders, particularly Black and brown New Yorkers. The funding for these cops should be redirected into things that will actually improve our transit — updating train signals, increasing service, and making the subways accessible for all New Yorkers.
- Freezing C-level hires at the MTA until Fast Track upgrades are complete. The MTA should not inflate the ranks of their executives with six-figure salaries until the basic upgrades we all deserve are completed.
- Funding subway signal infrastructure, rather than projects that extend the subway into wealthy neighborhoods. Every New Yorker knows that our subway system needs help. Yet, while subways in the outer boroughs languish, wealthy neighborhoods are getting brand new subway lines. I will fight for a moratorium on new lines into wealthy neighborhoods until basic upgrades are made throughout the system.
- Quickly implementing congestion pricing with minimal exemptions and expanding the policy to other parts of the city. Congestion pricing will reduce traffic by charging vehicles for entering certain parts of the city. Not only will this be good for the environment by reducing pollution, it will make streets and sidewalks safer for pedestrians and bikers. Congestion pricing has already been approved in Manhattan south of 60th Street, but the Cuomo administration has recently suggested they may delay implementation. I will fight to ensure this does not happen. I will also advocate that the policy be expanded to other parts of the district, such as downtown Brooklyn.
- Making New York a leader in greenhouse gas reduction, and improving health outcomes and quality of life for New Yorkers, by getting people out of cars and onto buses, bikes, and trains. People are fed up with how the city and state manage how we get around. Pedestrians and cyclists are less safe than ever and are increasingly battling for space with automobiles –– often with deadly results. Straphangers and bus riders feel powerless at the hands of the MTA hundreds of miles away in Albany. And drivers are tired of being punished, rather than incentivized, to switch to other modes of transportation. Our roads, bike lanes, subways, and buses should be safe, efficient, and work for the people who operate and use them. Specific measures I will support including:
- Introducing traffic-calming measures via infrastructure (i.e., physical barriers, curb cuts, greenery etc.) to protect pedestrians and bikers and encourage drivers to slow down before they speed;
- Removing minimum parking requirements city-wide to improve walkability;
- Identifying streets in the district and throughout the city to pilot a “busway” akin to 14th St in Manhattan;
- Connecting all disconnected bike lanes in Brooklyn within 5 years and significantly increase protected bike lanes;
- Ensuring that all NYCHA unites to have bike corrals or secure bike parking (e.g., https://www.ooneepod.com/).
Jabari rejects ALL corporate donations and developer dollars. His campaign is sustained by grassroots donors like you.
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