New York Note – End of 2024 Session, Congestion Pricing, Green Fast Track, City Legislation 

June 10, 2024
Albany Legislature Concludes 2023-2024 Session

The New York State Legislature concluded the 2023-2024 session on Saturday. The legislature did not develop a plan for a revenue source to replace toll revenue from congestion pricing, which the Governor indefinitely postponed earlier in the week. The legislature passed the Climate Change Superfund Act, which would establish a climate change adaptation cost recovery program, funded by fossil fuel companies and other significant polluters, and the SAFE for Kids Act, prohibiting social media platforms from serving algorithms to users under age 18. Other priorities of the Governor and legislative leaders were included in the state’s $237B budget, passed in April, including increased resources for retail theft, a statewide AI consortium, and a housing deal.

Congestion Pricing Delayed Indefinitely

Governor Hochul has directed the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to “indefinitely postpone” the implementation of congestion pricing in the Central Business District in Manhattan. She stated that implementing the program at this time risks “too many unintended consequences” and stated that “circumstances have changed” since the bill was passed five years ago. The MTA now has a gap of $15B in its capital plans, with no finalized plans of how to replace the funds. The MTA has previously stated that if congestion pricing was delayed or stopped, they would need to delay or scale back upgrades and repairs to the transit system.

Green Fast Track Takes Effect

Mayor Adams’ “Green Fast Track for Housing” went into effect last week, with the aim of shortening the lengthy environmental review process for certain residential developments. Green Fast Track for Housing creates new criteria for a “Type II” action under the City Environmental Quality Review process, meaning that neither an Environmental Assessment Statement (EAS) or Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is needed. In order to qualify, a project cannot exceed a height of 250 feet, must be limited to 175 or fewer dwelling units in low-density residential zoning districts, and can be no more than 250 dwelling units in medium- and high-density residential zoning districts.

NYC Council Introduces and Passes Legislation

Last Thursday, the NYC Council convened a Stated meeting, where they passed and introduced multiple pieces of legislation. The Council voted to expand its own authority to approve or block mayoral appointed commissioner positions, formally adding 20 commissioner positions to the “advice and consent list” and requiring the Mayor to seek Council approval before appointments to his Administration. The Council also introduced a bill requiring that any commercial waste hauler with a contract to operate in the City’s commercial waste zones does not merge with or acquire another zone, preventing one hauler from operating in more than 15 CWZs. You can find all of the legislation that was passed and introduced here.

City & State NY’s 2024 Above & Beyond: Pride

Rose Christ has been named to City & State NY’s 2024 Above & Beyond: Pride. The list honors LGBTQ+ New Yorkers fighting for equality across New York. Christ, Co-Chair of Cozen Public Strategies’ New York Practice, spoke about the advocacy role that government officials can play and her inspiration for getting involved in politics. She is also proud to work with Drag Story Hour NYC to bring drag artists to schools and libraries.

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Rose Christ

Co-Chair, New York Practice, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

(212) 883-2248

Katie Schwab

Co-Chair, New York Practice, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

(212) 883-4913

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