With Governor Paterson and the State Legislature working on a deal to help the MTA's finances—by way of introducgin $2 tolls on the East River and Harlem River bridges—lawmakers who oppose the plan have been speaking out. Yesterday, City Comptroller William Thompson and other lawmakers, such as Assemblyman Adriano Espaillat and City Council members John Liu and Robert Jackson, held a press conference to counter the bridge-toll plan.

Thompson said, "Harlem and East River tolls would burden many hard-working people who live in boroughs other than Manhattan and would drastically hurt small businesses, many of which already are struggling in this economy. Further, the bridge tolls include massive start-up and administrative costs and would drain an estimated $400 million from the $1 billion collected to construct and administer a toll collection system.” Espaillat questioned, "How can the MTA propose tolling the East River bridges while at the same time cutting outer-borough transportation services? This is counter-intuitive in my opinion, especially in light of the City’s effort to encourage more people to ride trains and buses.”

Their proposed solutions include a commuter tax, higher registration fees for vehicles. City Councilman Liu added, "The payroll tax is more than sufficient to plug the MTA’s operating deficit and fund much of the next capital plan, according to the Ravitch Commission."