McGowan On Congestion Pricing: Another Setback for Middle-Class Families

Assemblyman John McGowan (R,C-Rockland) opposes the proposal on congestion pricing, as nearly all commuters to Manhattan south of 60th St. will face high toll prices, except for the West Side Highway, FDR Drive and a few other locations where it will be free to enter the city. The increases could cost commuters roughly $23 a day during peak periods–6 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. on weekends. The only exception would be taxi, Uber and Lyft drivers who would be required to pay only once a day.

The goal of congestion pricing, according to New York City officials, is to benefit the MTA, repair transit infrastructure, combat pollution levels and reduce traffic in and around the city–in theory, cutting down on drivers by 20%. In places such as McGowan’s district, many people commute to and from the city each day, and they may have to reconsider their daily routes if congestion pricing becomes law.

“Middle-class, blue-collar families are taking the brunt for commuting into a city that is falling into debt. High gas prices and inflation are among the biggest concerns for families who struggle to put food on their tables, yet those who commute into the city will be slapped with yet another ridiculous toll. This will ultimately shut down businesses and cause more traffic in other areas. This was not a well-thought-out plan, but rather rushed and done behind closed doors. With enough pushback, we could see this turn around and save money for commuters from areas outside of the city and even New Jersey,” McGowan said.

McGowan is encouraging residents to weigh in before the Sept. 23 deadline. This can be done online or by email, mail or phone. Here are the contact details: