Sunday, March 15, 2015

If previous MTA funding schemes didn't work, why will this one?


From CBS New York:

Ardent protests erupted Friday against the latest attempt to put tolls on the free East River bridges as part of a congestion pricing plan.

As CBS2 Political Reporter Marcia Kramer reported, outer borough business and community leaders said they have been taxed enough.

The protest was billed as a wake-up call for New York City drivers who might be asleep at the wheel.

The protesters were targeting the latest incarnation of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s failed congestion pricing plan, which seeks to raise money for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority by putting tolls on four free East River bridges – the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg bridges between Manhattan and Brooklyn, and the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge between Manhattan and Queens.

Some believe the plan is a good idea because in exchange, it seeks to lower tolls on other spans such as the Henry Hudson between Manhattan and the Bronx, the Whitestone and Throgs Neck between the Bronx and Queens.

But elected officials and others at the protest listed all the tolls and taxes that have been enacted to help the MTA, which are still in effect today.

After the $15 auto use tax in New York City, officials enacted a $30 car registration surcharge in the entire MTA region, followed by a sales tax surcharge, a mobility tax on small businesses, and a 50-cent surcharge on taxi rides.

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

There are no free bridges between Staten Island and Manhattan.

Anonymous said...

Absentee developers...living in towns like Old Brookville....keep on erecting monstrosities that clog up NYC and leave their crap on our doorsteps to clean up. Now , we get the bill. We will pay for the overdevelopment. We have to build new schools and hospitals. If they cannot tax us to hell, they will toll us to hell! For whom the bells toll! It is for us and our older way of life. Let the third worlders who flock to New York, like iron filings to a magnet pay for it. No....the pol's have a better idea...squeeze the middle class until they become the lower class. Look at it this way. If I lose my middle class status, then I can go on the welfare rolls like the rest of the diverse , vibrant new arrivals.

Anonymous said...

GET YOUR HANDS OUT OF MY POCKET!

georgetheatheist said...

Staten Island...Schmatten Island. Who in Queens ever goes to Staten Island? I betcha more people in Queens go to Florida that Staten Island. SI's like a foreign country.

Anonymous said...

i'm all for it as long as the toll is low enough to pay the maintenance and that's it. no reason why people who don't drive over them should pay for them

Ms. Tsouris said...

The MTA is so corrupt it's unbelievable. They should open their books and then tell me I should pay a toll for the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridge! Most likely we are paying for these creeps to have chauffeured cars!I doubt they deal with commuting like us outer borough dwellers do! Oh, and George the Atheist, we do go to Staten Island! We have cousins who live there!

Middle Villager said...

You are missing the big picture folks, they want to take away our cars. Raising tolls and higher registration fees are just small steps. The City is also relaxing the parking requirements for residential buildings. By making parking impossible and car ownership cost prohibitive they hope we will give up our cars (and freedom) voluntarily. Next step will be to outlaw autos altogether. If are lucky maybe every family can keep 1 electric car. Big Brother knows better.

georgetheatheist said...

"...we do go to Staten Island! We have cousins who live there!"
_________________________________

Bet you feel sick to your stomach shelling out for the Verrazano toll ...which is going to rise. In my salad season, I, a life-long Queens resident, used to drive my VW bug with a date to Staten Island and park up on Lighthouse Hill. A great fun auto ride. The toll was 50 cents. Sayonara salad season. Sayonara Staten Island.

Anonymous said...

The MTA has a roughly fifteen billion dollar budget gap in the five year capital plan that was supposed to be passed before January. So the financial need to maintain what exists and expand slowly is three billion dollars annually above existing funding. MoveNY raises one billion annually for the MTA capital plan. If you're question is does this plan fix the MTA's finances, the answer is no. They're plan is to bond out the revenue, so in fifteen years drivers will pay a toll to pay debt on work done over the next five. While a new signal system installed on the 7 today won't need to be replaced in fifteen years, there will be other jobs that need to be done. The twenty year capital needs assessment showed pretty consistent funding needs over the next four five year plans. How do you pay for the work that the MTA will need to do in those future plans? It's unaddressed. Some of it will come from another revenue stream, either increased taxes or tolls/fares. But a lot of it needs to come from cutting costs. Getting contractors and unions on board to bring down costs won't happen without an engaged governor, and it won't solve the MTA's finances on its own. A new revenue stream is needed. Putting into state law that the Whitestone and other non CBD bridges only charge 55% of what the CBD bridges charge is a win, and corrects a real injustice.

anonymouse said...

They've got it all wrong. By adding tolls and removing parking in the outer boroughs, they're just making those places much less desirable for people of means. And when enough people get tired of squeezing onto the trains, they'll just leave those boroughs. Hopefully there's enough money floating around Manhattan and downtown Brooklyn to make up for the loss. Otherwise it'll be 1970s NYC part 2!

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad protests are taking place about this new TAX on the middle class. So the MTA is 15 Billion in the hole? Fire the management! Why do the working people have to bail out these inefficient mega agencies? And as for the Manhattan Buble people who are clueless about the necessity of CARS is the outer Boroughs, they expect parents in Bayside to bike their three kids to soccer practice in Middle Village, softball in Astoria, and Sunday school in Little Neck! Get your hands off my car and my right to drive!

mapman1071 said...

The bridges: the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg bridges between Manhattan and Brooklyn, and the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge between Manhattan and Queens: are owned and maintained by The City Of New York NOT THE MTA. If they are tolled the funds should go to maintenance of the bridges and city streets

Anonymous said...

They're not touching your "right" to drive. Want to drive to middle village, astoria, and little neck? Fine. Just don't expect to drive to midtown for free. Driving to the Bronx and SI, trips that are hard by transit will get cheaper, seems a good trade off. If you want off street parking you can pay for it. That's not impacted either. Forcing someone to pay for it when they don't have a car is wrong though, it's right to end that.

Anonymous said...

The city has massively cut they're annual contribution to the MTA capital budget over the years. Leasing the bridges to the MTA for cheap is a way to make up for that.

Anonymous said...

Mapman:
according to the Wikipedia link below, the bridges you mentioned are operated by the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority, which is an affiliate of the MTA. Check it at:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MTA_Bridges_and_Tunnels

Queens Crapper said...

The link says no such thing. Mapman is 100% correct. The city owns the untolled bridges.

Anonymous said...

It's not just about the tremendous need in many parts of our city to have a car. For a family of five to get to Manhattan from eastern Queens, it can cost almost $100, with LIRR and subway and bus fares, plus a very long time traveling. Driving to Manhattan is cheaper, and often faster for people in many parts of Queens and Brooklyn. Families are hardly making it in New York. Enough hidden taxes!

Anonymous said...

Protests go unnoticed. For all of the 60s style shit ...sit ins...boycots...etc. American Blacks have not gained the ground they thought they would have by now. Take a lesson from all this "civil disobedience" stuff. The power is at the polls and in your local civics. We have been electing the wrong people who allow us to get stomped on.

Broadway Baby said...

The protests should be directed to your city council members at their offices. Identify them as the guilty parties so they can't pass the buck to someone else.
One example is Paul Vallone, a dumb thug...who is a villainous supporter of overdevelopment that is at the root of congestion....and it's so called "cure" congestion pricing. He is a lobbyist for developers.

Anonymous said...

Mapman/Crapper. You're right, the city owns the bridges. The city also owns the subway system, it's only leased to NYCTA, an MTA subsidiary. Leasing the bridges to another MTA subsidiary as MoveNY proposes doesn't seem so different.

Anonymous said...

Tolling the QB bridge as a way to help with the MTA deficit is unbelievable. We already pay a ton in MCTD taxes and vehicle registration fees that go toward that agency. How is it possibly fair that the people who live in Queens should have to pay for crossing the bridge into another part of their city which has been free for as long as anyone can remember? If the MTA needs more funding (which is hard to believe that they actually do if they actually operated without corruption etc) then the MTA should figure out a way to cut some spending and raise some revenue like any other business in America. If you don't use public transit, you shouldn't pay for it. And if you do, then you should pay for the lovely experience. Why is it OK that the people of Queens should pay a toll to cross a bridge which is being portrayed as having no effect on OUR wallets, but another MTA fare hike is treated like the end of the world? Please, let me live in New York City and have some middle class fool in Bayside or Little Neck pay my way so I can afford to live here and ride a filthy train for $2.50. I don't think so.

And why is everyone so excited about the Bronx bridges being lower tolls if this plan goes through? Doesn't anyone know that A) the tolls will then go back up in a year (ha! The joke is on those drivers!) and B) not nearly as many people commute to work between those two places as they do Queens and Manhattan.

And if even you do drive into the city and pay for a garage, the NYC parking tax STILL includes fees that go where? Directly to funding the MTA. You can't escape!

Anonymous said...

The protests should be directed to your city council members at their offices. Identify them as the guilty parties so they can't pass the buck to someone else.
Concil member Mark Weprin supports this plan.

Anonymous said...

Even if you never use MTA services the city would not exist without them, you benefit enormously from the MTA. You should pay for that benefit.

Anonymous said...

MTA. Money Taking Authority

Anonymous said...

You pay fit the MTA benefit when you pay for the fare.