Bloomberg's Traffic Plan Gets State and Federal Support
In April, we wrote about Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s proposal to bring congestion pricing to New York City. The plan would require drivers to pay an $8-a-day fee to drive below 86th street in Manhattan between 6am and 6pm on weekdays. Although it appears as if the Mayor is in for a legislative fight, the proposal recently received key endorsements from New York Governor, Eliot Spitzer, and the Bush Administration. Mary E. Peters, the US Transportation Secretary, announced that New York City was one of nine finalists for a share of $1.1 billion in federal aid to fight urban traffic. However, the city’s share could be in jeopardy if the Mayor’s proposal does not win legislative approval by August. The necessary support may be difficult to achieve, as State Assembly and State Senate members from both sides of the aisle have voiced concerns. Despite, concerns of his own, Spitzer said he would work to ensure the passage of the plan. For those who think such a plan might not be necessary, the Transportation Secretary was apparently delayed in meeting with the mayor and governor because of traffic on the FDR Drive.