Speaking at the 103rd Street station in Corona Monday, Peralta accused the MTA of what he called "bureaucratic delays," saying the agency had already "cashed in" $1.5 million, which Peralta helped obtain for the MTA to carry out the renovation projects."The people of Queens have another 1.5 million reasons to be upset at the MTA," Peralta said. "New York City is one of the richest cities in the world and its transit system should be impeccable. The residents of this city should not settle for mediocrity. Hundreds of thousands of tax dollars are given to the MTA and everyone has a vested interest its management. The MTA should stop the bureaucracy."Peralta said that despite an MTA announcement that projects would not be held up on the 90th Street, 103rd Street and 111th Street stations due to budget problems, "work has been at a standstill for many months." The MTA has temporarily sidelined many repair and rehabilitation projects in subway stations, commuter rail facilities and other agency facilities because of worsening financial straits.."The MTA has stated its capital problems and is trying to deflect the situation," Peralta said. "In many occasions, it places the blame on everyone except itself."Peralta also mentioned a longstanding problem of pigeon droppings at the 103rd Street station.The assemblyman said the city's Department of Health as far back as Jan. 22, 2004 had cited the 103rd Street stop for unsanitary conditions because of bird droppings and ordered the MTA to "clean up their mess."Peralta's office cited a study published in the Journal of Pediatrics providing evidence that pigeon droppings are a health hazard to children. The study indicated that cryptococcus neoformans, a fungus present in pigeon droppings, infects a majority of children in the Bronx after the age of 2."The community is concerned about the delays and the work that was supposed to be done at these stations," Peralta said."Give me $1.5 million and I'll get these stations done in half the time, half the manpower and looking twice as nice."Reach contributing writer Philip Newman by e-mail at news@times
©2005 Community News Group
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