Bloomberg's Proposed Congestion Pricing Plan
and why it needs a second opinion - yours
by Joseph tiraco
1. Dividing instead of uniting the city is grand folly.
2. City activists have tried for years to eliminate barriers to free concourse, pointing to intra
city tolls as hindrances to mobility and open trade. They would say the mayor's plan is a
giant step backwards.
3. Our mayor, essentially a bean counter, a billionaire businessman who acquired a city late in
life, should look a lot closer to home for successful government models instead of chasing
grandiose European exoticisms. He has only to peer over the backyard fence; Ella Grasso
did more then anyone in the great state of Connecticut's four-hundred year history to ease
traffic congestion, and improve travel conditions by sweeping away all the toll booths in
the state in one bold stroke. To America's first woman governor, the underlying rationale
for government was first and foremost to improve the average person's lot.
4. A plan that calls for a blizzard of bills (tens of thousands a day) sent by mail, and based on
a technology to photograph mammoth masses of the public has never been tried before; is
bound to be unpopular, and can easily misfire, causing levels of cynicism and government
mistrust beyond anything ever experienced in this city - and this considering politicians
have never been very popular here to begin with.
5. Tolls on the free bridges has been discussed throughout the 20th Century, but like a bad
dream, was always dispelled in the glaring light of reality; no mayor, regardless of how
hard-bitten and hard pressed ever dared the coup de grace. For a lame duck mayor and
legislature to suggest a thinly disguised plan to do just that, and seriously consider
implementation without first getting the voter's consent, and not placing a proposal of
this magnitude on the ballot, is the very height of hubris. It's not true that New York
City voters always say NO, after all, they said YES to term limits -TWICE.