New York City’s adoption of congestion pricing measures is about a year away, but there are still many unknowns as to how, exactly, the policy will play out.
Here are some of the proposals and what needs to be done so the city can implement congestion pricing.
Appoint key board members
The mayor and the MTA need to appoint board members to the Traffic Mobility Review Board. Once this happens, the TMRB will release its recommendations on what the city should do for congestion pricing.
Flat fee pricing proposals have been released
While everyone waits for the board to be filled, others have released recommendations. The Regional Plan Association released a report that included a flat fee model.
If you want to enter into the area of Manhattan south of 60th Street, you’d have to pay $6.12 between 5 a.m. and 11 p.m. Then you’d have to pay another $6.12 to exit. The exit fee would help discourage people from trying to find a “cheap” way out of the congestion pricing zone.
High Peak Period pricing is also a possibility
Another proposal from the Regional Plan Association says the city could use a High Peak Period model. This would mean drivers would have to pay $9.18 during the busiest times of the day and evening.
The pricing models suggest $3.06 at night for the congestion entrance fee, and during the day on the weekends.
There would be no charge for weekend nights. The RPA also says trucks would face a fee that’s 2.5 times higher than passenger cars because of pollution and increased traffic.
Some get an exemption
Emergency vehicles, vehicles transporting the disabled and drivers using FDR Drive or the West Side Highway will be exempt.
If you live in the area and make less than $60,000, you can get a tax credit equal to what you pay on tolls. There’s also an exception that will be in place for drivers who must move cars because of alternate-side parking.
Instead of worrying about congestion pricing, it’s time to start thinking commuter benefits.
Your company can save $41 per employee per month on payroll tax for each employee who takes advantage of your commuter benefits.
If you have 50 enrolled employees, you could save $24,000 over 12 months. With 75 employees, that number could grow to $36,000,
And if you are a commuter, know you can save up to $265 per month tax-free to be used on public transit, rideshares and qualified parking.