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Op-Ed | Governor Hochul must remove congestion pricing equipment and technology immediately 

Queensboro bridge. File photo via Getty Images.

June 6, 2024 By Gus Lambropoulos

Over the past five years, we have heard countless and baseless arguments about why we should accept congestion pricing, and I have been dead set against it because it is nothing more than a cash grab on the backs of hard-working New Yorkers.

When I first learned of this plan, I took the initiative to rally our communities and raise our collective voice. We stood up against the politicians who envisioned a daily $23 tax on all New Yorkers to fund their undisclosed projects.

As we are challenged by an affordability crisis, I was heartened to hear Governor Kathy Hochul acknowledge the economic implications and take decisive action to halt congestion pricing indefinitely.

Governor Hochul has called for an indefinite pause on congestion pricing. The Governor cited the affordability crisis and not wanting to be bound by years of political rhetoric as economic realities have changed driving her shift in public policy.

As much as I applaud that decision, I’m a savvy New Yorker who knows these ideas come back when you least expect it. I’m calling on Governor Hochul to ensure this idea is truly dead by removing all the congestion pricing technology and equipment from Manhattan. Congestion pricing was a bad idea, and it’s time to send it and the equipment to the scrap heap.

It is imperative to take swift action before the next set of politicians see the convenience of flipping a switch and turning on the cash cow funded on the back of hard-working New Yorkers. Now, we must be vigilant to ensure the pause is permanent because we know the entrenched political establishment will be back to grab your wallets and pocketbooks.

Governor Hochul must take tangible steps to ensure congestion pricing never becomes a reality by removing the congestion pricing equipment and technology as soon as possible.

*Gus Lambropoulos is a Democratic candidate for NY State Senate, District 59. The son of hardworking Greek immigrants, Gus was raised in Astoria, attended local public schools, graduated from CUNY Baruch College, and earned his MBA at Adelphi University. 
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