New York, NY —
City Council Members are hearing testimony for both opponents and supporters of congestion pricing today. Mayor Michael Bloomberg's aides again dangled the prospect of losing a $354 million federal grant as an incentive to approve the plan within the next seven days.
Queens Council Member Melinda Katz, who opposed congestion pricing, criticized that tactic.
KATZ: We are basically thanking the federal government for giving us the money to give us permission to tax ourselves and to me that doesn’t make sense.
REPORTER: The federal grant is supposed to pay for more buses and other upgrades to prepare the mass transit system for the additional riders who would give up driving rather than $8 to get into the busiest parts of Manhattan.
The hearing continues through this afternoon. Another session will begin at 6 p.m. to accommodate people's work schedules.