Saturday, June 09, 2007

Michael Bloomberg Must Go

Stealing yet another play from the EU's nanny-state playbook NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg has proposed a pay to drive scheme for lower Manhattan:
NEW YORK (AP) -- Traffic congestion and devastating pollution are among the "inconvenient truths" of our age and could be eased by imposing pay-to-drive fees on Manhattan motorists, Mayor Michael Bloomberg told a legislative panel Friday.


"The threats to our city, and our planet, are inconvenient truths that we can no longer avoid facing, and that we can no longer wait for Washington to confront," Bloomberg said, referring to the title of Al Gore's Oscar-winning global warming documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth."

Under Bloomberg's proposal, cars entering Manhattan south of 86th Street would be charged $8 per day, and trucks $21. Under a three-year pilot program, the fees would be collected only during the worst traffic hours, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Two major roadways flanking the east and west sides of Manhattan, FDR Drive and the West Side Highway, would be exempt.

Very similar to the program in use in London.

The thing I don't like about this is it:
  • Mainly punishes lower or middle class people for whom that 8 dollars may be a significant expense.
  • Will increase business costs. (You think that 21 dollars wont be passed on?)
At least some lawmakers agree with me:
Some lawmakers in the city's outer boroughs and bedroom communities do not support the so-called "congestion pricing," saying it would punish many drivers.

"This is a tax on middle-class people," said state Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, a Westchester Democrat who chairs one of the committees that held the joint hearing. "This will stop the Chevrolets from coming in, not the BMWs."

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