De Blasio Betting Cuomo Won’t Shut Down the MTA Again Ahead of Snowstorm

Mayor Bill de Blasio with Gov. Andrew Cuomo. (Photo: Bryan Thomas for Getty Images)

Mayor Bill de Blasio with Gov. Andrew Cuomo. (Photo: Bryan Thomas for Getty Images) Bryan Thomas/Getty Images

Mayor Bill de Blasio today predicted that Gov. Andrew Cuomo would not repeat last year’s humiliation and close down the city’s mass transit ahead of the blizzard expected to strike Saturday morning.

Mr. de Blasio made the forecast at a press conference at a city salt shed in Manhattan, almost a year to date after the governor abruptly announced he was cutting off subway service as a major snowstorm approached New York. The mayor had received no warning of the stoppage, and had told the public to stay off the streets and use mass transit instead.

“I don’t think this is a situation where the MTA would consider shutting down the system,” Mr. de Blasio said, noting that meteorologists are anticipating far lighter snowfall of eight to 12 inches this time around. “I think we all learned some good lessons from that situation.”

But the mayor admitted that he was ultimately at the mercy of Mr. Cuomo and his MTA chairman, Thomas Prendergast.

“The system, I don’t expect a shutdown but I, certainly, look forward to having that conversation with the governor and the head of the MTA,” he said.

The MTA did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Despite dire predictions and drastic action, last year’s blizzard largely passed over the city, mostly hitting Long Island and New England.

The closure of the system last year was just one example of the increasingly eroding relationship between Mr. de Blasio and Mr. Cuomo and a jarring example of the two governments not being on the same page. But the mayor promised there would be better communication on any similar snow-related issues this time around.

“The lack of coordination was a real problem and obviously, decisions should have been different,” Mr. de Blasio said. “But this time there’s going to be a lot more communication and coordination.”

De Blasio Betting Cuomo Won’t Shut Down the MTA Again Ahead of Snowstorm