Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder (D- Rockaway) announced his support today for Governor Cuomo’s budget proposal that included a toll discount program for residents of Rockaway and Broad Channel. This program calls on the state to pay the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) for costs associated with reimbursement of E-Z Pass tolls paid by residents of Broad Channel and the Rockaway Peninsula for travel over the Cross Bay Veterans Memorial Bridge.
“The proposed toll discount program is truly a victory for the residents of the Rockaways and Broad Channel,” Goldfeder said. "I am proud to work with the community, my colleagues and the Governor to ensure that struggling families are given the relief they deserve from this unfair burden."
The Cross Bay Bridge toll is the only intra-borough bridge toll in New York City. Local residents of Rockaway and Broad Channel are required to pay a burdensome toll, several times a day, in order to get to work and back, transport children to and from school and complete other everyday errands. According to Assemblyman Goldfeder, this negatively affects an already sluggish local economy and places an inherently excessive financial burden on the residents and small businesses of southern Queens and Rockaway.
Assemblyman Goldfeder has been a staunch advocate for a complete toll elimination on the Cross Bay Bridge. In the fall of 2011, he sent a letter to MTA President Joseph Lhota, asking that the MTA reinstate the full residency discount. Shortly after, he sent Lhota a petition with 2,000 signatures in support of the toll’s elimination.
“We have been advocating relentlessly to end the toll on the Cross Bay Bridge,” said Assemblyman Goldfeder. “From the many civic and community leaders who rallied, to the thousands of community members who signed our petition, we are one step closer to successfully eliminating this toll completely and lifting a significant financial burden off the shoulders of many hardworking families and businesses in Rockaway and Broad Channel.”
Goldfeder recently introduced legislation in the Assembly that would eliminate the burdensome Cross Bay Bridge toll permanently (A.9000).