Friday, April 18, 2014

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The Call Blog: Governor Announces Toll Discount on Verrazano Bridge

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Our callers were happy with the discount, but many said it's just a drop in the bucket. Tolls are at ridiculous prices all over our area and there seems to be no end in sight, especially with the incremental increases every year. I have a feeling that the eventual idea is to price people out of driving into Manhattan because I don't think anyone will be able to afford a $20 toll into the City... at least not the average taxpayer.



After years of hoping for one, Staten Island drivers using the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge will finally catch a break. Governor Cuomo was on Staten Island today to announce a deal with legislative leaders that will roll back the bridge’s toll to pre-2011 levels, the last time the toll was raised.

The new toll will drop to $5.50 for Staten Island residents, down from the current $6 or $6.36 drivers pay based on how often they use the span. Commercial vehicles that make more than 10 trips over the bridge per month will get a 20 percent discount. The current toll of $15 in cash or $10.66 with E-ZPass for non-Staten Island residents will stay the same.

The announcement comes at a time the Governor and many in the legislature are up for re-election, raising the question if the move is geared to garner votes. The State and the MTA will each contribute $7 million to fund the discount.

Are you cheering the discount at the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge? What’s your reaction to the timing of the announcement? Do you support the State and MTA fund covering the cost of the deal? Should they make a similar effort to cut down on costs for straphangers and other train commuters?

Reply with your thoughts using the link above.



These bridges have been paid for many times over. The toll should be only the amount needed to maintain them.

Something is wrong or I misunderstand something. I'm a citizen of Staten Island, but no matter how many times I cross the Verrazano Bridge, I pay $15 in cash. Where's my discount?

Joe
Staten Island



The price reduction is nice but the governor is playing us all for fools. He is just buying votes. The only thing that has changed is that he needs votes.

R. Smith



I hope the govenor isn't going to forget about the fair and decent contracts for the unions, they keep the city moving espically my buddies at the MTA. I dont mind paying a little extra so they can get a fair and decent contract, If the State and the MTA have that much surplus money they should give the union members new contracts

Herman
Upper West Side



Bridge tolls should be for bridge TLC, not tax revenue.



It’s simple. Re-election time and so all the free bees are being handed out.
So Staten gets a break on the toll but they still don’t have to pay for a ferry ride.
After the elections we will be hit with every tax they can get their hands on
and it will be the same people getting a break with all the amenities and the same
people that get hit with all the taxes will be taxed once again.
We that get taxed have no say because the ones getting everything are voters
for these same old politicians that have made a career of their jobs.

IT’S ALWAYS THE FADING MIDDLE CLASS THAT TAKES THE BRUNT OF EVERYTHING !!!

AND SO IT GOES !!!!!!!

Maxxiee
Morris Park


I am thrilled about the discount. Staten Islanders deserve a discount on all the bridges we use to enter and exit our Island. We are the only borough that has to pay to leave or come home. When the bridge opened, the toll was $.50 in each direction. We were told that the toll would go away once the cost of building the bridge was recouped. Well, 50 yrs later, not only hasn't the toll gone away it's increased in price higher than the level of inflation for the same time. Bravo to Governor Cuomo to getting this done. Someone finally listened. Now only if the PA NYNJ would do the same thing for the 3 Jersey spans, Staten Islanders might feel some relief from the "EZ Pass Blues".

Jessica
Arden Heights


This is definitely great news for staten islanders but what about people who live in Brooklyn and always go into Staten Island, or live in Jersey and work in Brooklyn, is there a break for us?

Junior
Brooklyn



Why should we pay so much for a bridge that doesn't even go to a different state? New York makes so much money, it should give break to people who finally make $8 per hour but have to work at least 2 hours just to go over the bridge once. Please guys, take another look at these tolls. Thank you.

Muja



A discount is needed on a brigde that connects you to another borough like RFK and the tunnels. Its crazy to pay 15 dollars around trip .

Jerry



In years to come, only the 1% will afford to cross a bridge.

MZ
Richmond Hill



so $7million of nys taxes will cover the toll cost...I have only been on the bridge 2x...

MaryJo
Upstate Rochester



although it may sound like good news for Staten Island, what about the people that live out in long island, the outter boros. What about the bronx. I live in the bronx and have to deal with the GWB, New Rochelle tolls, and Yonkers toll. Its sad. Where is all this money going?

Hector



Just lower all the tolls!

Shelley
Park Slope



All of the Staten Island Politicians who boasted about this 86 cent reduction are just kissing up to Cuomo. They are all well paid, so they are out of touch with real peoples needs. Politics as usual.

Arnie
Staten Island



Any break we New Yorkers get I applaud. I do, however want, all New Yorkers to pay attention to Gov Cuomo and what the decides to do about Fracking in upstate NY near our underground water resources! I'm sorry it's not directly related to the staten Island toll issue but I don't want him to think that any amount of good will he exhibits for New Yorkers will ever compare to him giving the green light for Fracking!

Barbara
Harlem

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