Congestion pricing OK with ‘hardship exemptions,’ NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio testifies in Albany

Mayor Bill de Blasio is open to congestion pricing — but only with certain carve-outs.

During testimony on the state’s budget on Monday, de Blasio put the onus on state lawmakers to find new revenue sources for the beleaguered MTA — which faces large capital and operating funding gaps — during the current budget cycle. He could get behind congestion pricing as a solution as long as there are “hardship exemptions” for certain drivers in the city, he said.

“New York City residents agree it is time to fix the state-run Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and it needs to be this year in this budget, I strongly believe,” de Blasio said. “And we know we all would like to see clear accounting of MTA capital expenditures and what money they need when — but in the meantime, we also know that tens of billions of dollars would be needed on a sustainable basis.”