NEW YORK (CBSNewYork)Opponents of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s controversial plan to charge people who drive into key parts of Manhattan during the week condemned the idea at a City Hall gathering Sunday.

Last month, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported that officials have been secretly working on a hush-hush congestion pricing proposal for months. The plan would carry a $10 charge to enter Manhattan below 60th Street.

Among those against the idea is Queens Assemblyman David Weprin, who told WCBS 880 Sunday it was the “wrong tax for the wrong time.”

SOUND-OFF: Tells us how a potential congestion tax would affect your commute in the comments section below…

Weprin and a group of officials from Queens and Brooklyn spoke out against a similar effort which failed three years ago.

“This is the kind of proposal that pits one borough against another because it discriminates against the boroughs outside of Manhattan. Now is not the time to divide us. We’re still in a fiscal crisis,” he told 1010 WINS.

Weprin even suggested such a plan could push residents and businesses away from the city.

“Businesses and the middle class are really feeling that maybe New York City is not the place to be. [They may think] it’s not the most friendly place to small businesses and to the middle class,” Weprin said.

Mayor Bloomberg disagrees with that assessment and in January said “I still thinks it makes so much sense.”

“You want to dissuade people from driving because our streets are clogged,” Bloomberg said.

Sources said advocates hoped to have a traffic pricing bill before the Legislature sometime this year.

“This is really just another tax on people that really rely on their cars to get into Manhattan that have no other choice,” Weprin said.

“No to congestion pricing. No to traffic pricing. No to small business killers.”

Comments (9)
  1. ian lynch says:

    Traffic. Of course there is traffic. What did people think when they took away two lanes of traffic on already slowing moving First and Second avenues and created dedicated bus lanes (which the busses never use) and bike /floating parking lanes. And why is the bus lane on Second avenue have time constraints while the bus lane on First avenue is 214/7? Is the inconsistency a way of generating more tickets? Will a resident South of 60th Street have to pay when tehy come home from a trip during the week? What about sick people being driven into the city to see a doctor south of 60th?

  2. Same old same old says:

    Congestion continues due to the fact that city has failed to deal with the problems that cause it. The city should find ways to make it easier to get across midtown. They should also enforce the laws on the books – that it is illegal to block an intersection. This applies to city buses and cabs too, not just car drivers. Jaywalking is a major problem too and it is not enforced either. So, Mayor Napoleon will just make new laws to deal with old problems.

  3. BILL says:

    Yes this will greatly reduce driving into NYC as well as reduce business as well. But it will do wonders for Billionaireberg’s ability to get around town!

  4. RON says:

    The NFL should get Singers Who know how to sing the NATIONAL ATHEM and sing it as it was written and not jass it up.

  5. 01608 says:

    Will ppl hav 2 pay 2 go 2 work?

    1. charles b silberman says:

      I am handicapped so I have to drive in and pay the tolls and monthly parking so now I will have to pay another tax this is stupid. If all the MTA stations could be used by the handicapped that would be all right but the MTA has been working on that forever

      I think that city is out of it’s mind.because all they are doing is telling company’s to move out of NYC and go to NJ or CT or telling the people to work from all the business that count on the people in the city get hurt.

  6. anyc says:

    if the MTA service was GOOD – this might be an option – but yes – right now – as the MTA is disintegrating, we are left with no better options than to drive – we are moving backwards!!

  7. vito says:

    Time to leave NYC!

  8. sk says:

    Yes there is a lot of congestion on the streets of manhattan. First, we don’t want empty streets, lots of cars is asign a lot of business. Second, public transportation also ha s alot of congestion. So the subways and buses should be more jammed? Penn station and GCS don’t have enough people running a rounnd. So taht will just add on mor eproblems. Also, why is the goverment trying to find everyway to spend more money when many don’t have it!?

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