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February 8, 2008

Queens Approves Congestion Pricing Plan

The state’s Traffic Congestion Mitigation Commission voted Thursday to approve a congestion pricing plan. The plan, which passed by a vote of 13 to 2, would charge drivers $8 to bring their vehicles below 60th Street during peak traffic times – 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday.

It is intended to reduce pollution and generate $491 million a year in revenue that would be directed toward expanding the City’s mass transportation system.

Corey Bearak, a policy advisor for the same organization, said the tax will mostly affect outer borough residents.
“From its very inception, the public faced a stacked Commission who came to their posts hell bent on tolling and taxing New Yorkers while they protected wealthy folks from the suburbs and out of state,” Bearak wrote.
According to Keep NYC Congestion Tax Free, Queens’ Community Boards 4, 6, 7, 8, 11, 13 have all come out against the congestion pricing.

“Vague promises, intentions – items along those lines simply do not cut it,” McCaffrey said. “The public is far too smart to fall for that kind of foolishness on the part of the commission.”

Well to many non Manhattanites dismay, the congestion pricing plan has been approved. I am still unsure if it will help or just be another drain on commuters, or could possibly flood the Subway system if it deters enough people from driving in.