De Blasio pushes ‘aggressive’ approval of NYC’s congestion pricing in call with Buttigieg

Federal approval of New York City’s congestion pricing program will move forward “aggressively” under the leadership of new Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, Mayor de Blasio said Tuesday.

Hizzoner said he spoke with Buttigieg last week about the scheme, which aims to pour billions into long-overdue transit upgrades at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority by charging motorists a new toll when they drive south of 61st St. in Manhattan.

The tolls were scheduled go live in early 2021 after the Legislature authorized the plan in 2019 — but transit officials have for more than a year said holdups by the Trump administration delayed the launch until at least 2023.

The program requires U.S. Department of Transportation approval because many of Manhattan’s streets receive federal funding and are a part of the federal highway system.

“One of the ways to help benefit the MTA — the bottom line of the MTA and make sure we have the mass transit we need — is to move congestion pricing aggressively,” de Blasio said at a news conference. “He heard me loud and clear — New York City is ready to go. I think he’s going to do a lot to help us.”

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