2009-03-20 / Letters

Paying To Celebrate In The Rockaways

Dear Editor,

The Rockaway Saint Patrick's Day Parade is now called the Queens County Saint Patrick's Day Parade. Not in favor of the name change, but it got me thinking. Queens County residents living on the mainland have to pay a toll to be part of their great parade. These same people, in order to take the family to see one of the five oceans of the world, must pay a toll to experience its awesome power. The funny thing is that the MTA records indicate that most of the toll money collected, at the two bridges going to Rockaway, basically funds the cost to collect these tolls.

These records also show that in some years these bridges operated in the red mainly due to these collection costs.

I know this is hard to believe, I also questioned this statement over ten years ago, when it came up at a town hall meeting. However, I hope that our local political leaders would review the MTA's records, as I did. To resolve this crazy situation, I suggest that The Authority transfer these two bridges to the city or state, and eliminate the tolls. In this way the bridges could be eligible for large federal subsidy funding, from the gas taxes we pay, since the government does not provide funding to toll bridges or roads.


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