Still, Lisa Daglian, the executive director of the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the M.T.A., said Ms. Feinberg’s ties to the governor could be an advantage for the transit agency and the riders that rely on it.
She added that Ms. Feinberg, as the subway chief, had already shown that she could manage the largest part of the agency — the subway and buses — during a very difficult period.
“She has the governor’s ear and the governor’s trust and that will help as our region continues to reopen and recover,” Ms. Daglian said. “As we move into our next normal, we need to figure out how to keep the agency afloat and how to pay for its day-to-day operations and capital construction so that riders have the system they need and deserve.”
Ms. Feinberg, who lives in the East Village, commutes to work on several subway lines, the L and the Lexington Avenue 4, 5 and 6. In her current position as interim subway chief, she earns $325,000 annually. She will give up that salary to become chair of the M.T.A., which is an unpaid position.
She would replace Patrick J. Foye, the current M.T.A. chairman and chief executive, who is leaving to become interim president and chief executive of Empire State Development, the state’s economic development agency.
But Ms. Feinberg would only assume part of Mr. Foye’s job.
Janno Lieber, who oversees the transit agency’s capital projects, will be appointed by Mr. Cuomo to take over for Mr. Foye as chief executive of the transit agency. He will be in charge of running day-to-day M.T.A. operations and oversee the agency’s ambitious effort to modernize the transit system.
This is not the first time these leadership roles would be held by different people, but the roles have been combined since 2009 through state legislation. M.T.A. officials said that legislation would be proposed to split the roles again.