Paterson Will ‘Reverse’ Elimination of Student Metrocards

ALBANY—David Paterson said he will reverse one of the worst aspects of the M.T.A.’s just-adopted “oh-crap-we-have-no-money” budget: the elimination of free Metrocards for students.

“Had we established the tolls, the M.T.A. would not be in the difficult financial situation right now causing the M.T.A. to take some very drastic actions, one that I promise to reverse, which would be charging fares to young people for the use of their Metrocards as they go to school,” David Paterson said as he signed an order preventing discrimination against transgender individuals. He hinted at this yesterday.

“Because they have to go to school in the same way that people upstate who are objecting to the license plates have to go to work and use their vehicles,” Paterson said. “The only reason I haven’t said I’m directly going to do it is I want the public to understand that revenues have to come in to the level that would allow me to do that.”

Paterson does not have the power to do this directly, but he could probably make it happen by sending the authority money, which he can’t do right now.