Editorial: Riding is believing with North Fork train service promises

02/02/2017 12:00 PM |

It’s time for words like “could” and “might” to be stripped from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s vocabulary when discussing additional Long Island Rail Road service to and from the North Fork.

This week, Assemblyman Fred Thiele (I-Sag Harbor) — a staunch advocate for expanded public transportation on the North and South forks — issued a press release entitled “East End/LIRR service improvements.” It was a promising announcement that unfortunately fell a bit flat the more you kept reading.

Here are some of the highlights:

• The MTA will provide a draft schedule for a fourth weekday departure from Greenport.

• The MTA will review the cost of providing additional crew for expanded weekend service to the North Fork.

• The LIRR has proposed that on a seasonal basis a “fisherman train” be added to promote seasonal tourism.

This isn’t to say we think Mr. Thiele and others, including North Fork Assemblyman Anthony Palumbo (R-New Suffolk), haven’t been doing their part to convince the MTA that expanded service is necessary on the North Fork. We’re just tired of hearing about draft proposals being reviewed and not seeing any appreciable action.

Mr. Thiele is optimistic that plans will be finalized next month and that expanded service will be implemented by the end of the year. We hope he’s right.

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