Congestion pricing traffic

Anthony Behar/Sipa USA

Effort to repeal congestion pricing gains steam

April 04, 2019 - 1:28 pm

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) – The state Legislature has already passed congestion pricing, but with a new poll showing a majority of New Yorkers opposed to it, there’s already a movement to repeal the measure.

According to a Quinnipiac University poll released Tuesday, 54 percent of New York City voters oppose congestion pricing, while 52 percent say that it will not be effective in reducing traffic.

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Republicans are among the most outspoken opponents of congestion pricing, but the new toll is also getting opposition from Democratic Assemblyman David Weprin.

Weprin called the process horrible and said congestion pricing should have been deliberated.

“There should have been hearings. I think it’s outrageous. I think the public should be outraged,” he said.

Republican opponents of the plan say despite the name, congestion pricing will do nothing to reduce congestion. They’re launching an ad campaign claiming that it’s all about taking money from hardworking New Yorkers.

Jadan Horyn, of the government watchdog group Reclaim New York, told CBS2 that lawmakers approved congestion pricing even though the final details weren’t yet known.

“It does absolutely nothing to reduce congestion. That’s the worst part,” Horyn said. “It’s a lie. All it does is drive revenue into MTA, and MTA is a black hole.”

Democratic state Sen. Todd Kaminsky says he supports congestion pricing but will hold those who make critical decisions about the new toll accountable. 

“The panel may be greedy and piggish and not treat the public with the respect it’s due, but we’re going to keep pushing that panel to do the right thing,” Kaminsky said.

Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat, told 1010 WINS he’s optimistic that a compromise can be reached for New Jersey commuters who will pay more to drive into Manhattan south of 60th Street.

While drivers coming through the Lincoln and Holland tunnels would get a credit towards the congestion pricing toll, drivers crossing the George Washington Bridge would have to pay both the bridge and congestion tolls. That's not sitting well with Murphy.

“The George Washington Bridge, which I think is 60 percent of our community traffic in and out of New York, is not part of it, and that’s a problem,” Murph said. “We’ve got to keep working that until we get that to a better place.”

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