Port Authority refuses to grant toll waiver for charity motorcycle run
The Warriors Run motorcycle group changed their fundraiser route that was intended to go from New Milford to Ground Zero at the last minute because the Port Authority would not grant a toll waiver for the George Washington Bridge.
The original route for the 40-mile ride would have taken Run's 250 participants to Ground Zero in lower Manhattan and back to New Milford. The route was changed to stay in New Jersey and along Routes 4, 17, I-280 and I-287 through Oakland, Ramsey, Teaneck, Bergenfield and Dumont. The drive was intended to raise money for various veterans organizations.
In a statement to the Record, the Port Authority says it receives and considers "numerous charitable requests each year" and decided that the Warrior Run request was "outside typical Port Authority procedures as applied to other charitable entities."
Warriors president Bob Nesoff says he reached out to the Port Authority Commissioner John J. Degnan and Executive Director Patrick Foye to reconsider their decision and got a response from spokesman Cedric Fulton who cited "an obligation to their bond holders" as a reason to turn down the group's request. Fulton also said that the run's return to New Jersey was another factor. "It was to be a continuous moving tribute at Ground Zero, U-turn at Liberty St. and return to NJ where it would terminate," explained Nesoff in an email.
The run, only in its second year, did not have an issue with the tolls last year. "They wanted to know how many riders so they could provide a proper police escort," said Nesoff.
Nesoff said the group decided it would be better to donate the $8,000 in tolls to the charities that benefit from the ride including the Wounded Warrior Project, the USO and the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.
- Charity bike run was diverted to avoid toll at GWB / The Record