The MTA will vote to raise fares and tolls today for bus and subway riders and drivers. Since New Yorkers have been fussing about it since July, and maybe because we've learned that the MTA's budget problems are monstrous, the NY Times notes that these hikes are coming with "little outcry." What Gothamist finds amusing is that the MTA is trying to say that the fare hike, all told, is less than the 1996 hike, if you work out various discounts and averages. Perhaps, but it's a perception problem: The MTA raised fares last year, and this year, they are raising the prices of unlimited Metrocards (which are still a good deal). Are we supposed to anticipate fare hikes each year? Or can the MTA trim some of their fat at the same time?

NY State's transportation panel commissioned a study of, well, NY State transporation, and the University Transportation Research Center (at City College) came back with a study called: "Transportation: Trouble Ahead." (Here's the PDF.) Great, just great. Gothamist skimmed through the 40 page study, finding these NYC nuggets:
- Penn Station has more than twice the number of boardings as the next busiest Amtrak station (Philadelphia).
- The largest [transit] operator by far is the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA). The MTA’s subway system, for example, carries 10 times the number of passengers as the next largest system, located in Chicago.
- LaGuardia and JFK airports...together serve the largest number of originating air travelers in the country. JFK airport has more
international flights than any other United States airport and is a major entry point for air cargo.

Basically, the report is trying to get Governor Pataki to invest in transportation infrastructure first, like repairing the 37% of bridges of NY State that were found to be obsolete or damaged. Yeah, that'd be a good idea if you want that fourth term, buddy.