September 22, 2022

The New York Civil Liberties Union (“NYCLU”) submitted comments in response to the Central Business District's Tolling Program (CBDTP Environmental Assessment. Without significant efforts to safeguard people’s privacy, the proposal threatens to severely undermine New Yorkers’ constitutional protections, in particular their rights under the First and Fourth Amendments.

Much is at stake with the ambitious CBDTP. Thousands of cameras and RFID readers would be deployed on all streets connecting the Manhattan CBD, creating a permanent and complete surveillance system that would track the movement of every one entering and exiting the CBD. Privacy can not remain an afterthought for the CBDTP. The project can only be a success if rigorous guardrails and protections are put in place to safeguard people’s privacy interests and civil rights. And to encourage more New Yorkers to use mass transit, our transit system must be affordable, accessible, and free from police harassment.