MTA holds first meetings since congestion pricing pause

Samantha Liebman

Originally published in Spectrum News NY1 on .

The message from MTA leadership since the congestion pricing pause has been that the capital program must prioritize the state of good repair.

That is, making sure the system continues to run. But many public speakers from the disability community at Monday’s committee meetings said the pause should not impede the MTA, making 95% of subway stations accessible by 2055 as mandated by a federal court settlement.

But of course, there are still objections to the plan and support for the pause, including those party to one of the suits that was all but dismissed last week. State Sen. Jessica Scarcella-Spanton, who represents parts of Brooklyn and Staten Island, commented at the capital committee meeting.

“This is the wrong plan for my constituents,” Scarcella-Spanton said. “Not only do Staten Islanders and Coney Islanders have some of the longest commutes in the country, we also have some of the highest tolls as well. The air quality would decrease and get worse. On the north shore of Staten Island, which is predominantly Black and Hispanic, while getting better in the central business district, I don’t think it’s better to place one district over the other.”

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