New York’s heatedly debated plan to become the first U.S. city to charge motorists an extra fee for entering its most congested area has been approved by the federal Department of Transportation – and New Jerseyans are angry.
The MTA’s pricing plan would require drivers, particularly those from New Jersey, to pay $23 via an electronic toll to enter Manhattan below 60th Street.
The MTA has contended that congestion pricing is crucial to their staying afloat by generating $1 billion annually. The proposal’s proceeds would support loans for the MTA’s subway and bus networks’ capital enhancements.
The new tolls could be implemented as early as next year.
“Today’s decision by the U.S. Department of Transportation to allow New York’s congestion pricing plan to move forward is unfair and ill-advised. The Administration’s decision to move forward without a true environmental impact study undercuts some of the Administration’s own long-term goals, including the Justice40 initiative,” Gov. Phil Murphy said.
“Since day one, I’ve stood against the disproportionate negative impacts of congestion pricing on New Jerseyans – a greater financial burden on New Jersey commuters, double tolling, toll shopping, a lack of revenue for NJ TRANSIT, outsized environmental burdens on certain North Jersey communities, and financial impacts on the Port Authority’s capital budget. Everyone in the region deserves access to more reliable mass transit, but placing an unjustified financial burden on the backs of hardworking New Jersey commuters is wrong. Simply put, it is a money grab.
“As a conceptual matter, I support congestion pricing, but it must be structured in a way that is fair to all sides. UntiI New York’s congestion pricing plan is fixed, I will keep working closely with partners from both states and both sides of the aisle, including Congressman Gottheimer and our congressional delegation, to halt implementation of this misguided tolling plan. Our Administration is closely assessing all legal options.”