It wasn't only the economic downturn which deterred so many of us in Connecticut from going south to New York and New Jersey. It was also the tolls on bridges and tunnels which had been jacked up last September. Even with an E-Z Pass, the round trip for a car during peak hours now sets us back $9.50.
The AAA of New York and New Jersey had tried to remedy this. It had sued in federal court in Manhattan for a fee roll-back. It argued that the increased collections were allegedly being used illegally to help fund rebuilding the World Trade Center.
U.S. District Judge Richard Howell denied that argument, reports BLOOMBERG, because of a lack of evidence. However, he did allow the plaintiff to pursue having the tolls ruled illegal. As a result, the defendant the Port of Authority won't be able to dismiss the suit. Therefore, the lawsuit can move onto the discovery phase.
This is a key economic issue for businesses in the tri-state area. Instead of Connecticut residents purchasing or renting vacation spots at the Jersey shore, they can head north to Rhode Island where there is ocean - and no tolls. At least not yet. Some powers-that-be in that state had been talking about tolls between the border of Connecticut and Rhode Island. The latter could kiss tourism good-bye.