Busy Week for New York, Marking Big Changes

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Photo by Willem-Jan Huisman on Unsplash

In the past week the state of New York passed a budget that will have huge ramifications for the Empire State.  Spoiler Alert: things are not getting less expensive.

Congestion Pricing – The bridge and tunnel crowd will not like the congestion plan that will go into effect in 2021.  The Manhattan plan marks the first congestion plan in the Unites States.  On top of your tolls to enter the city, you will now have to pay an electronic toll to enter below 60th street.  No exact toll numbers have been confirmed, but it has been rumored at $11.50 per car and $25.00 per truck. The proposed plan will reportedly raise $15 billion in yearly revenue for the struggling MTA.  Senator Bob Menendez and many New Jersey drivers believe this is double taxation.  Some have even called for New Jersey to tax New Yorkers that are visiting the Garden State to go shopping or just driving through.  This could get interesting, we’ll keep you posted on this New York – New Jersey beef.

Toll Increase – The Verrazzano Bridge jumped from $17 to $19, making it the most expensive toll in the US.  Having fun yet?

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Mansion Tax – This tax will generate approximately $365 million per year.  Something you don’t have to worry about if your house is worth less than $1 million.

Plastic Bag Ban – Starting March 2020, New York will become the second state (after California) to ban disposable plastic grocery bags.  Essentially forcing residents to pay for five-cent paper bags or re-use-able bags.  This will reduce the 70,000+ tons in plastic bags used annually in NYC alone, revenue will be split so three cents goes to the EPA and two cents goes to the municipality.

Cash Bail – NY state has eliminated cash bail for non-violent felonies and misdemeanors.  The cash bail system has proven to discriminate against poor, mainly minority communities as highlighted by the Kalief Browder case.

Cuomo Gets an Increase –  As if you needed more reasons to not like Andrew Cuomo (I.e. The Tappan Zee Bridge), this one may take the cake. New York lawmakers have approved a pay raise for the governor.  In 2020 his salary will go from $200k to $225k. in 2021 his salary will rise again from $225k to $250k.  Making him the highest-paid governor in the nation passing up California Gov. Gavin Newsom who earns $202k.

What are your thoughts on these changes?

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