Dec 192012

Even as New York City’s most accomplished traffic planner pushed for an overhaul of the region’s toll system, politicians opposed to a toll increase on the Verrazano Bridge have failed to take notice. (Source: Sam Schwartz via

Today, as MTA board members approved a series of expected toll and fare hikes on subways, buses, commuter trains and bridges; a group of Republican state and federal legislators who represent Bay Ridge are making their disapproval known – particularly when it comes to toll increases on the Verrazano Bridge.

U.S. Congressman Michael Grimm, State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, and State Senator Marty Golden released a joint statement yesterday – detailing their displeasure with the transit authority’s expected decision, and asked board members to vote against the measure.

Now don’t get us wrong, we here at Bay Ridge Odyssey are very much against any further raise in the Verrazano’s already ridiculously high cash price of $13 to $15 [by comparison San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge is $6 cash, and $5 with FasTrak - California's equivalent of E-Z Pass].

However, we feel local pols should have presented some type of alternative plan that would, you know – maybe raise revenue in a more equitable manner.

Bay Ridge Odyssey had previously reported on Gridlock Sam Schwartz’s plan to dismantle our current dysfunctional, Manhattan-centric toll pricing system, and replace it with a fairer, more logical one.

Are there logistical problems with implementing this system? Of course.

But at least it presents new, innovative ideas that, while not perfect – offer something more than “no.”

Meanwhile, MTA Chair Joe Lhota, the guy who presided over the very toll and fare hikes populist Republicans are railing against – is resigning to run for mayor [wait for it], as a… Republican(???)

You can’t make this stuff up.