Orange County requires protection from congestion pricing


Make text smaller Make text larger





Earlier this year, the governor’s Fix NYC panel released a report that laid out the framework of a congestion pricing plan to reduce gridlock in Manhattan.

While I certainly understand the need to address traffic in New York City and repair its crumbling subway, the solution should not fall on the backs of Orange County taxpayers.

Under the proposal, drivers entering Manhattan south of 60th Street would pay a new $11.52 toll, while taxis and ride-sharing passengers would pay a $2 to $5 surcharge.

For commuters from the outer boroughs, Long Island and east-of-Hudson, many drivers will be able to shift to public transit and avoid the new toll.

West-of-Hudson’s Orange and Rockland drivers, however, do not have that same opportunity.

We do not have subways, we do not have buses anywhere near the scale of what’s in the five boroughs and we do not have adequate rail.

We do not have a one-seat train into Manhattan – necessitating a transfer in New Jersey – and we have not benefitted from any mega-projects like other regions have seen such as LIRR’s East Side Access and New York City’s Second Avenue Subway.

The result is that for every dollar Orange County taxpayers pay into the MTA system, we receive less than 65 cents back in services.

While I have worked tirelessly to close that value gap in recent years – securing a midway train yard and passing sidings in the current five-year capital plan – there is still a ways to go.

According to a 2014-2015 Port Authority study, residents from Orange and Rockland counties account for 10,823 one-way daily trips over the George Washington Bridge and through the Lincoln Tunnel; this represents approximately 7 percent of these crossings’ weekday traffic and these taxpayers, many of whom I represent, deserve a carve-out from congestion pricing.

Working with like-minded colleagues, I am adamantly pushing to ensure Orange County drivers are not disadvantaged by any proposal that moves forward. We can come up with a solution that eases New York City’s gridlock and subway issues without Orange County residents shouldering the costs.

Assemblyman James Skoufis

D-99th Assembly District



Make text smaller Make text larger

Comments

Pool Rules



MUST READ NEWS

Journalists are not the Enemy
By Jeanne Straus
We’re concerned about President Donald Trump’s attacks on journalists. At Straus News we don’t editorialize or endorse candidates for local...

Read more »
Image

Where in Chester?
The next clue can be found in Chester. Where have you seen it? If you think you know visit chroniclenewspaper.com and click on the Fun & Games tab at the top of the...
Read more »
Image

Where in Chester?
Congratulations to readers who know that the gingerbread detail in last week's Where in Goshen can be found at the house at No. 11 Prospect St. in Goshen. Sharon Frey recognized...
Read more »
Image

Departing mayor offers roadmap for Goshen village's future
By Geri Corey
— Kyle Roddey, addressing members of the Goshen Chamber of Commerce at a July breakfast meeting, said that he...

Read more »
Image

VIDEOS



Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
Community Newspapers


MOST COMMENTED



Find more about Weather in Chester, NY