No Charge to Walk/Bicycle across the New Bridge

Seen also in yellow at some TZB E-ZPass® lanes/ Rob Jones

Seen also in yellow at some TZB E-ZPass® lanes/ Rob Jones

Governor Andrew Cuomo talked about tolls last October when he was in Piermont to welcome the crane. “We need to get a little more specific information before we can figure out what the tolls could be,” he said.

Asked about the task force he proposed in 2012 to address this, Cuomo listed the unknowns: how much from the feds and the state, plus state loans and grants available, and built-in contract incentives for Tappan Zee Constructors, LLC (TZC) to finish the project before spring 2018 or penalties for completing it later.

Anyone hear about incentives and penalties?

“Once you have those numbers, then you can come up with a plan about how to do it, what commuters should pay, on-hour, off-hour, etc.,” he said.

We know some of those numbers.

The governor assured the task force will be formed “I think within the next year, certainly,” and commuters “should have to pay as little as possible.”

We’re waiting to hear.

CLRamdhUkAAzSjCEarlier this year (May) the Thruway Authority Board approved a $1.9 billion spending plan that closes a gap identified in the original 2015 budget approved last December. It includes more than $22 million in spending cuts, nearly $44 million in reduced debt service costs and no toll increases for any part of the Thruway system.

The agency’s fiscal year is January 1 through December 31.

* * * * *

Even teenagers want to know what the tolls will be (TBD) and if it will be free to cross the bridge on their bicycles and on foot (yes to both). While there’s no clue about the future fare — and sometimes grumbling about the current one — there is a way to see things differently.

“How much it is?” mom asked. We were driving back from Rockland, cranes and piers to the left and metal overhead. “Five dollars,” I replied. “Do we have to pay both ways?” “No, one way, coming into Westchester,” I said.

She paused. “That’s not bad. Only two-fifty each way.” I grinned.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2015

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