Crossing MTA bridges and tunnels are going to become more expensive this upcoming Sunday, April 11, as fare hikes will be implemented.
For passengers who take the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge, the carpool discount has been eliminated. The Verrazzano discount for Staten Island residents will not be eliminated, after lawmakers secured an additional $2.5 million in the state budget to maintain the toll rate for Staten Islanders.
Overall, the E-ZPass toll on major MTA crossings will be raised from $6.12 to $6.55, and the Tolls-by-Mail rate will increase from $9.50 to $10.17.
Elimination of the carpool program is expected to save the MTA $1.4 million in operating expenses, and provide $2 million in revenue annually, Staten Island Live (silive.com) reported.
“This is a situation that has become difficult to manage at the agency in a cashless environment. What we count on is for customers to flip a switch on their tag to indicate they have at least three passengers in their vehicle,” said Mark Young, vice president of the Long Island Rail Road.
The MTA will now implement a mid-tier rate to encourage drivers to properly display their E-ZPass tag. People who have a registered E-ZPass account but do not properly put their tag up will be charged $8.36. The new mid-tier rate is expected to bring in $24 million in additional revenue annually.
“So now, what this does, is it allows us to recoup our costs and it gives a deterrent for that person who already has their license plate associated with an E-ZPass account, so why not just post the tag,” said Daniel DeCrescenzo, acting president of MTA Bridges and Tunnels.
Updated Monday, April 12, 2021 at 10:34 am .