The Toll Map That Should Pique the Interest of Every Staten Island Elected

In case you missed it, today the Staten Island Advance rounded up outraged quotes from local politicos in response to the MTA’s proposed fare and toll hikes. Big emphasis on “toll hikes” — it’s the prospect of paying more to cross the Verrazano Bridge that has State Senator Andrew Lanza vowing to somehow defeat the proposal in Albany, while U.S. Representative Michael Grimm pledged to do the same through an act of Congress.

Just putting this out there, but there’s a more productive way to represent Staten Island commuters, including the substantial number who take transit, than bashing the MTA. Sam Schwartz’s Fair Plan [PDF] would ratchet down the tolls on the Verrazano — from the current $5.76 for local E-ZPass holders and $13 cash toll to $4.60 and $8, respectively. At the same time, the plan raises funds for transit (and roads) by putting a price on the crossings that are most congested. Here’s what that looks like on a map:

No act of Congress required, but Albany will have to get on board.