NYC congestion pricing plan target of new bipartisan congressional caucus

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, March 15, 2023
NYC congestion pricing target of new bipartisan congressional caucus
New York City's congestion pricing plan is once again under fire from a bipartisan pair of lawmakers. NJ Burkett has the story.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- New York City's congestion pricing plan is once again coming under attack from a bipartisan pair of lawmakers.

On Wednesday, New Jersey Congressman Josh Gottheimer, a Democrat, was joined by New York Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis, a Republican, to announce the creation of a bipartisan congressional caucus to fight congestion pricing.

The caucus would use federal legislation, congressional oversight and the threat of lawsuits to stop the city's plans to put congestion pricing in place, Gottheimer and Malliotakis said.

They are demanding a full environmental impact study on how the plan would affect neighborhoods outside of Manhattan.

"We believe that it would have detrimental impact on surrounding neighborhoods outside of the congestion zone," Malliotakis said. "Believe that pollution is a traffic will be shifted."

The announcement is the latest push in an ongoing effort to stop the controversial proposal.

While it aims reduce traffic in the busiest parts of Manhattan while at the same time providing needed funding for mass transit, it remains unpopular.

It's expected to raise at least a billion dollars every year, revenue the MTA is counting on to maintain and upgrade the transit system.

"This is for, I call it, some of the unsexy stuff in our system: power, track, signals, for example, the new R-211s you covered last week," New York City Transit President Rich Davey said. "Being able to buy more of those kinds of newer subway cars more quickly."

Wednesday's announcement comes two months after Gottheimer and New York Republican Congressman Matt Lawler rolled out the bipartisan Anti-Congestion Tax Act.

The legislation would defund the MTA at the federal level if congestion pricing is put in place.

"New York City and the MTA are playing Russian roulette with their economy, and are willing to stick it to all of those hard-working commuters from Jersey, the outer boroughs, and the New York City suburbs, like my friend Congressman Lawler represents, with their absurd $23 a day Congestion Tax plan," Gottheimer said at the time.

Although any tolls paid to cross either the East River or the Hudson River would be credited against the congestion fee.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul has said she doubts that legislation would pass the Senate.

Washington sends the MTA about $2 billion a year and gave $15 billion in COVID relief.

RELATED | New Jersey congressman declares war on NYC's congestion pricing plan

New Jersey Congressman Josh Gottheimer will announce a new bill aimed at combatting the proposed $23 tax to drive into Midtown Manhattan. Mike Marza has the story.


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