Today MTA board members, by a vote of 12-to-1, increased tolls on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge $2 to $13, and increased cash tolls by $1 to $6.50 at seven major crossings. Drivers who use E-ZPass will have their tolls increased by 5 percent to $4.80 at major crossings. This comes on the heels of bus and subway fare increases earlier this month.
“I am outraged that the MTA once again punished the commuters and riders of Staten Island,” said Senator Lanza. “While the MTA is fully aware that they have never met their obligation to provide even the basic service to Staten Island, they have nevertheless decided to further hike tolls on Staten Islanders who depend on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge to get into the City.”
“The MTA has a never-ending history of fiscal mismanagement that only adds to the burdens placed on commuters and riders,” said Senator Lanza. “It is unbelievable and unfair that the thousands of Staten Islanders, who rely on public transportation and the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, are faced with fair and toll increases while the MTA remains unaccountable for their fiscal irresponsibility.”
“The MTA consistently comes to the taxpayers of this state with their hands out,” said Senator Lanza. “I voted against the MTA bailout because I knew that giving the MTA a blank check paid for by the taxpayers would not stop them from raising fairs and tolls.”
To view Senator Lanza’s comments on the MTA bailout plan click here.
Senator Lanza is also supporting legislation in the New York State Senate, S. 6645, that would create the Metropolitan Transit Authority Interim Finance Authority. This Authority would be governed by a seven member, nonpartisan, Board appointed with two members by the Governor, one member by the Senate Majority and Minority Leaders, one by the Assembly Speaker and Minority Leader and one by the State Comptroller. This Authority would have the ability to monitor, oversee and control the MTA’s finances.