Here's the latest proposal to address the transit funding crisis: make transit worse. That's right, Roe Daraio of a group called Communities of Maspeth and Elmhurst Together (Comet, get it?) wants to "help the MTA" by reducing transit frequency. You see, Maspeth has some private jitneys that do not always follow the laws and regulations. Daraio argues that the "commuter vans" are stealing passengers from the MTA buses and draining their farebox revenue.
There are numerous flaws in this argument, but the most obvious is that this proposal would reduce overall service. If you're in Maspeth and want to go into Manhattan, you probably don't care whether the bus that takes you there is run by the MTA or a private operator. You might care about price, safety and comfort, but then again you might not. If you currently rely on the jitneys to supplement the MTA schedule, then that would no longer be available to you.
If this enforcement effort were to succeed, it's highly unlikely that the MTA would increase service to make up for the reduction in frequency. COMET is certainly not asking them to. There's no evidence that they see the jitneys as providing any value whatsoever.
In fact, Comet has been waging a campaign against the jitneys for over a year, and conspicuously absent from that campaign have been the jitney customers. In their quotes you get the impression that the vans are there for the sole purpose of getting in the way of Roe Daraio's car. The group seems completely oblivious to the fact that the vans are there because their own neighbors are paying them, and they are paying because they provide value.
Keep this in mind when you hear politicians talking about giving power back to "the community." They're not talking about people like you and me, who might be sick of waiting for infrequent MTA buses. They're talking about people like Roe Daraio, whose solution to reckless jitneys is to harass them out of business, and whose solution to the MTA funding crisis is to reduce transit service. For these "community activists," transit users don't exist or matter, and the more power they have, the less services we'll get.