(TRENTON) – An Assembly panel approved on Monday legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats John McKeon, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Nicholas Chiaravalloti to encourage NJTA and MTA to offer E-ZPass discounts for residents of New Jersey.
“Over 70 million EZ-Pass holders traveling through MTA tolls are New Jerseyans,” said McKeon (D- Hudson). “Many residents travel to New York for work and vice versa. A reciprocity agreement would help working families in New Jersey and New York decrease the cost of transportation in their household budgets. This would be a win-win for both states.”
Among the sponsored legislation released by the Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee:
- A-5147 requires that the lead agency of the New Jersey E-ZPass Group is to publish certain information concerning the purchase of an electronic vehicle identification system transponder or the initiation of an account with a New Jersey electronic toll collection system;
- AR-284 urges Metropolitan Transportation Authority to provide E-ZPass discounts to NJ residents; and
- AR-285 urges NJTA and Metropolitan Transportation Authority to enter into reciprocity agreement to provide E-ZPass discounts to residents of New York and New Jersey.
“With the interconnectedness of the citizens and economies of the States of New York and New Jersey,” said Vainieri Huttle (D- Bergen). “It is simply in the best interest of the citizens of both states that the NJTA and the MTA enter into a reciprocity agreement that provides E-ZPass discounts to residents of both states.”
“In northern counties like Hudson, many residents are commuters traveling in and out of New York daily for work,” said Chiaravalloti (D- Hudson). “A mutual agreement to share the discounts between New York and New Jersey residents is a smart step for both states.”
According to AAA Northeast, a number of other toll agencies engage in similar practices of charging a higher cash toll rate to out-of-state E-ZPass account holders, including the NJTA, which charges out-of-state E-ZPass account holders the higher cash toll rate during off-peak hours. In addition, between 2012 and 2016, there were more than 92 million transactions in which E-ZPass accounts that were established outside of New York were charged the more expensive cash toll rate on MTA toll facilities instead of being provided with the E-Zpass discount, with 70 million of those transactions coming from New Jersey E-ZPass account holders.
The bills will now go to the Assembly Speaker for further consideration.