Mayor Bloomberg, enlightenedly governing from Copenhagen via the World Wide Web this week, had the following to say about the dim-bulb, smaller-carbon-footprinted folks back home to CNBC:

 “I don’t think that congestion pricing and those kinds of things are dead; more and more cities are doing it. … Come March, [Albany is] going to have to balance a budget, and I think that any kind of revenue source is going to be on the table. … You see all of the cutbacks in the MTA budget. The MTA has got to find another source. If we had done congestion pricing two years ago, perhaps they wouldn’t be in this situation. [Fiscalwatch sourced this quote from the Daily Politics‘ Liz Benjamin]

Bloomberg conveniently left something out: maybe he prefers congestion pricing to the bailout that the MTA actually got, but the MTA isn’t in trouble now because it didn’t get any new money from Albany. It got $2.1 billion in new money annually from Albany in May (give or take a couple of hundred million a year).

If “we had done congestion pricing two years ago,” the MTA would be in exactly the same situation today — because it still managed to rise the same amount of money it wanted, through other means. (In fact, if you really want to quibble, the MTA would be worse off, in the short term, since contractors would have to build all of the congestion-pricing infrastructure before it would start to pay off.)

If Albany eventually passes congestion pricing, does anyone think that it will repeal the MTA’s new payroll tax, which hits downstate employers?

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