💲Gov. Phil Murphy adds to the lawsuit against the MTA over congestion pricing

💲NYC is moving ahead to implement the plan

💲Talks continue between the MTA and NJ to resolve the lawsuit

Gov. Phil Murphy added to the state's lawsuit against the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority over congestion pricing.

The lawsuit was filed in July against the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration to force the completion of an environmental impact study of the plan. Murphy said it was not done, which "short-circuited" the normal process.

"I've got to stand up for New Jersey commuters. We believe the Federal Highway Administration could call a time out and say 'you know what, we need the full environmental study," Murphy said. "If there's any project anywhere in the United States right now that merits a full-bore environmental study it's this one."

Congestion pricing prices
Congestion pricing prices (Canva)

A plan that benefits New York, not NJ

The lawsuit amendments claim that the MTA and the TBTA violate the U.S. Constitution’s dormant Commerce Clause and unconstitutionally burdens the right to travel by implementing congestion pricing. According to the lawsuit, lower-income commuters will not qualify for the Central Business District tax credit, discriminating against New Jersey residents.

"The federal government and the MTA can no longer be permitted to fast-track a proposal that solely benefits New York’s transportation system at the expense of hardworking New Jerseyans," Murphy said in a statement.

U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J. 5th District, a critic of congestion pricing, offered his support of the change to the lawsuit.

"The MTA can’t use Jersey drivers as their free-for-all piggy bank," Gottheimer said in a tweet. "There will be consequences for their pollution-causing Congestion Tax."

The MTA is moving forward with congestion pricing and has scheduled public comment about the plan to begin on Feb. 29.

Acting MTA Chair and CEO John Lieber said the lawsuit from New Jersey needs to be resolved and meetings have been taking place all month. New Jersey 101.5 has learned another session is scheduled for Friday.

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