NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – As the harsh reality of congestion pricing continues to sink in, there’s even more bad news – it’s not just the pockets of out of towners that will be picked under this new plan.
CBS2 political reporter Marcia Kramer reports that anyone who wants to live, eat, or shop in New York City will also be feeling the pain.
“I deliver seafood and produce,” delivery man Duvall Hunter said.
Hunter delivers food for Demartino’s, but he doesn’t know for how much longer.
“My job has cut backs, they have to pay for congestion pricing, parking, the tolls… so we lose.”
You know who else will likely lose? You.
“Because once we incur… the charges, most likely we’re going to raise prices, which is really bad for the consumers,” Andre Castillo, the store manager of Pioneer Supermarket said.
From supermarkets to plumbers, “it’s going to affect businesses, building owners, house owners,” Leslie Dow with McCready and Rice Plumbing & Heating explained.
Congestion pricing will likely drive up the cost of just about every good and service delivered south of 60th Street, as trucks will likely be slapped with a reported $25 fee on top of the tolls they already pay.
“It will pinch everyone,” Manhattan resident Gladys Ganzel lamented.
Even residents who actually live inside the zone will reportedly be taxed because part of the plan may include socking them with an “intra-zone” fee for driving around their own neighborhood.
“Part of the program is to… have more use of mass transit,” state budget director Robert Mujica said.
Mujica added in a phone interview with CBS2 that their plan to penalize Manhattan residents who have cars is meant to discourage driving.
“The statute allows the board to come up with a recommendation with regard to vehicles that are remaining in the zone and roaming in the zone.”
That reportedly includes ride shares like Uber and Lyft which Gov. Cuomo said, on the radio, can also expect to be hit.
“They spend the day in Manhattan and that’s a big part of the congestion… so that’s one of the issues the MTA will have to deal with,” Cuomo said.
One method lawmakers may use to stick it to Manhattan drivers is by employing the use of existing technology, like red light cameras, to also act as an electronic toll collector.
“As we get more details about congestion pricing… the so called circle of pain seems to increase,” Marcia Kramer said to Mayor de Blasio.
“What I know is we have to fix the subways. If we don’t fix the subways the economy won’t work. I care about folks who live in the zone. I want to make sure they’re treated fairly, but we’re not going to have the answer today,” de Blasio said.
The mayor conceded that even with the new plan, more will have to be done to ease congestion – not only in the Manhattan business district – but in all five boroughs.