Atlantic City Expressway, Pleasantville Toll Plaza

Based on unofficial traffic figures provided by the South Jersey Transportation Authority from the Atlantic City Expressway Pleasantville Toll Plaza, 818,255 toll-paying vehicles went into and out of the city between June 27 and July 8. 

ATLANTIC CITY — City Council passed a resolution Wednesday requesting the fare be doubled at the Atlantic City Expressway’s Pleasantville Toll Plaza, with the additional revenue going to the city.

Council President Marty Small Sr. said the governing body is asking the South Jersey Transportation Authority to increase the toll fare by 75 cents to $1.50. Small said that based on an analysis he did and presented to the SJTA in 2014, the increase could have netted the city an additional $15 million from the number of trips recorded in 2013.

According to Pleasantville Toll Plaza data for 2017, the total number of trips at that location could have generated nearly $14 million under the proposal. For 2017, the total collected from all tolls on the Atlantic City Expressway was $51.78 million, according to SJTA data.

The SJTA was unaware of the City Council resolution and declined to comment until the agency had a better understanding of the issue.

Councilman Kaleem Shabazz said council needs to continue to find ways to relieve the tax burden and not “unduly burden” visitors. He said the proposal does both.

“I don’t think this proposal will hurt visitors in terms of the amount of money that we’re asking for,” Shabazz said. “But I think it will be a significant piece of money for the city.”

Atlantic City has not introduced its 2018 budget. City officials have said this year’s spending plan should come in ”at least flat.”

Small said the revenue would be placed in a dedicated account to be used only for tax relief. Asked about potential push back about raising tolls, he said the focus was on city residents first and foremost.

“A lot of people might have a lot of different opinions,” he said. “But when I’m representing the taxpayers and the chance to lower their taxes (is presented), nothing else matters.”

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Contact: 609-272-7222 Twitter @ACPressDanzis

I cover Atlantic City government and the casino industry since joining The Press in early 2018. I formerly worked as a politics & government reporter for NJ Herald and received the First Amendment: Art Weissman Memorial NJPA Award two years in a row.

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