Written by Joe Scotchie Friday, 06 November 2009 00:00Since April of this year, the Mobilized Interfaith Coalition Against Hunger (MICAH) has lobbied the Village of Massapequa Park for a shuttle bus to connect residents to the Long Island Rail Road and mass transit buses.
However, due to the current economic climate, Mayor James Altadonna claims that the village cannot fund such a project.
“In this environment, I’d be hard pressed to ask residents to shoulder the economic burden that would transpire from such a project,” Altadonna told The Massapequan Observer. “I understand the need [for a bus], but we have to balance that need with residents’ concerns.”
Mayor Altadonna has asked the proponents of such a project to contact the offices of State Senator Charles Fuschillo (R.-Freeport), State Assemblyman Joseph Saladino (R.-Massapequa), and Nassau County Legislator Peter J. Schmitt (R.-Massapequa) for funding from sources other than the Village of Massapequa Park coffers.
In April, MICAH did a demographic and engineering study concerning job access by local residents to mass transit sites in the village. The MICAH study found that the village qualified for mass transportation based on the number and proximity of working families.
In August, MICAH presented Mayor Altadonna and the board of trustees with the results of a survey of village residents that confirmed that residents would use a subsidized shuttle bus to connect to the mass transit systems.
As the MICAH study acknowledged, the village currently owns a shuttle bus and provides free bus service to senior citizens. The Village also subsidizes a taxi service, at a cost of $1 plus tips each way, for seniors in Massapequa Park.
According to MICAH, the shuttle bus that would operate between 6 and 9 a.m. in the morning and 5 and 8:30 p.m. in the evening. The plan was also presented to Senator Fuschillo and Assemblyman Saladino, but the village has made its position clear.