Friday, June 15, 2007

Queens Pols Congested Over Tax

The rising level of opposition to the mayor's congestion tax plan has found its strongest expression among Queens electeds. As the Queens Courier highlights in an editorial this week, "Not so fast Mayor Mike," calling on the mayor to slow down "and address all of the problems, pitfalls and nasty scenarios of your congestion pricing plan for Manhattan."

Leading the Queens charge is Assemblyman Rory Lancman who told the Courier that "it is somewhat irresponsible on the mayor's part to drop this radical, comprehensive and complicated plan on the legislature's desk two weeks before the end of the session." Lancman also points out that we don't need a congestion tax to fix the city's traffic mess.

The editorial concludes with the observation that; "The plan raises so many questions and provides few answers. Administration and enforcement will be a nightmare." The paper than asks its reader to call 311 and tell the mayor what he can do with his congestion tax.

The Queens Chronicle also has an interesting article on the controversy. In it, the paper cites the fact that only two Queens electeds support the mayor's plan. The article quotes Assemblyman Ivan Lafayette that, "He fears that the enactment of congestion pricing will wreak havoc in residential areas and transportation hubs." Audrey Pheffer from Far Rockaway said that the plan would hurt small businesses: "She said that the toll on small businesses could devastate the city's economy."

All of which should be seen as a warning to Bronx BP Carrion who, toadying to the mayor's whims, has just come out in favor of the plan. This after he failed to unequivocally oppose the auto-dependent Wal-Mart, and after he supported the asthma-rich Gateway Mall on the grave site of the old Bronx Terminal Market. Adolfo better watch his back-the Diaz family may be coming after him, and Brooklyn and Queens voters aren't going to respond kindly to his lack of concerns for their interests.