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5:31 PM EDT on July 12, 2007

New York and six other cities have their federal grant application presentations online here at the Transportation Research Board. Contrary to congestion pricing opponents who claim the July 16 federal deadline is a ruse. Patrick Decorla-Souza at the FHWA confirms that all of the "other applicants either already have statutory
authority, or the granting of authority is not a controversial issue."
The federal grant process is moving forward with our without New York, it seems. 

Azi Paybarah
reports that Sheldon Silver is not calling the State Assembly back to Albany for a vote on Mayor Bloomberg's congestion pricing proposal. Rather,  he is convening a meeting of New York City and
suburban Assembly members on Monday, July 16 in New York City. If the meeting doesn't result in some sort of official legislative
approval -- and it's hard to see how it would -- New York City's $500 million will go to Dallas, San Diego, Atlanta, San Francisco, Denver, Miami, Seattle or Minnesota.

Council Member David Yassky, Chair of the Small Business Committee, issued a report on congestion pricing and its effect on small business today. Conclusion:

Suppressionof potential business activity in the area is unlikely. If anything,the reduction in congestion is expected to cause something of a boostin productivity, which should have a positive impact on growth in thearea.

Bloomberg's approval rating is at an all-time high.

The take-away from today's Times story about the high cost of private parking space in Manhattan: Everyone (including Richard Brodsky and David Weprin) seems to be raking in dough off of parking except the City of New York. Does the Mayor need Albany's approval to completely revamp New York City's on-street parking policy? I think not.

Charles Komanoff fixes to get Sheldon Silver's attention with biblical and Zionist references in this Villager op/ed. Suffice it to say, Shelly's no Ben-Gurion.

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