Drivers crossing the RFK Bridge in Astoria next Thursday will not be able to pay with cash and will instead, get a bill in the mail.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced in October a plan to make all 7 MTA-owned bridges and tunnels cashless. The Queens Midtown Tunnel transitioned in January and in April the Cross Bay and Marine Parkway Bridges in Rockaway went cashless.
Sensors and cameras known as gantries will be suspended above the highway to take photos of license plates and E-ZPasses. Drivers who do not have an E-ZPass will receive a bill in the mail. Those who do not pay their bill will be charged a fine.
The governor argues that cashless tolling will reduce congestion, saving drivers up to 21 hours of drive time a year, and will reduce emissions since drivers no longer have to stop and wait on cash-only lanes.
“A critical route for both commuters and visitors,cashless tolling on the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge will improve the safety of all motorists and reduce congestion to streamline travel between Queens, Manhattan, and the Bronx,” Cuomo said. “By transitioning to cashless tolling at New York’s crossings, we are transforming our transportation infrastructure to meet the needs of 21st century travelers, while providing safe and easy commutes for generations to come.”
Violation fees, registration suspensions and other enforcement actions will be imposed on those who do not pay their fees and ignoring two notices will result in a $100 fee per toll violation. The Department of Motor Vehicles can suspend the vehicle registration of motorists who fail to pay three tolls, violation fees and other charges resulting from violations on different days, within a five-year period.
To sign up for an E-Zpass, visit MTA.info/E-ZPass. Drivers without E-ZPass can pay a bill online at the Tolls By Mail website, by mail, over the phone, or in-person, and payment options include check, credit card, bank account, or cash. Customers who call **826 from most mobile devices will receive a text with a link to the Tolls By Mail website and information on how to set up a Pay Toll Now account that can be used by rental car customers.
The Verrazano Bridge will go cashless in July, followed by the Throgs Neck Bridge in September and the Bronx-Whitestone Bridge in October.