A Tale of Two Boroughs

In the wake of Governor Andrew Cuomo's announcement today of a much-anticipated deal giving Staten Island E-Z Pass holders a major break on Verrazano Bridge tolls, City Council Member Vincent Gentile asked "Whaddabout Brooklyn?"

While commending Cuomo's sweeping discount plan to drop the Staten Island-side toll to $5.50, Gentile said today in a media release that the Governor dealt out Brooklyn.

Residents of Gentile's City Council district, which surrounds the Brooklyn end of the Verrazano, use the bridge to commute to work, to shop, to go to college, and to visit family on the island. Brooklyn drivers pay a lot more per crossing  -- $15 a pop -- than Staten Island drivers do.

Gentile again called on Governor Cuomo today to extend the Staten Island discount plan to Brooklyn residents, saying that local people who need to cross the Verrazano every day or nearly every day should get the same discount that Staten Islanders do.

If the Port Authority can swing this deal for its bridges, Gentile said, the MTA could too.

So far, the MTA has ignored Gentile's offer to call a meeting of state legislators and MTA officials to talk about a Brooklyn discount.

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