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Silver Expresses Support For East River Tolls

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TWC News: Silver Expresses Support For East River Tolls
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Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said Wednesday that he supports a revised plan to put tolls on the East River bridges in an attempt to avoid massive fare hikes and service cuts by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

Silver's proposal would charge drives using these crossings the same amount as the base subway fare – which is currently at $2.

The Ravitch Commission recommended tolls on the East River Bridges that would be the same as those on other MTA bridges, like the RFK Bridge – which costs $4.15 to cross with an EZ Pass.

Negotiations are still in the early stages, and it's not clear if Silver's idea will pick up steam.

Lawmakers are trying to come up with a plan to avoid steep fare hikes and service cuts the MTA says it will have to implement if it does not get help from Albany.

Meanwhile, Governor David Paterson has begun circulating a draft of legislation that would implement the recommendations of the Ravitch plan, which includes a new payroll tax.

Paterson is pushing the state Legislature to act on the plan within the next week, before final negotiations on the state budget.

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