State Senators John J. Bonacic and William J. Larkin have introduced legislation, (S.7187/A.9944) to authorize payment for the work done to date on the Exit 122 project along Route 17 in Orange County, and has asked the State DOT to take steps to expedite the re-bidding of the contract so work can re-commence in the summer.
Bonacic indicated he had asked the Governor’s office if they would consider a legislative ratification of the contract, which would have allowed the project to immediately continue. The project is an important part of the conversion of Route 17 to I-86, and also important to ancillary economic development and faster access to the new Orange Regional Medical Center.
However, the approach which the Governor’s office seems more likely to support is a ratification of the payment for the already completed work, while also taking steps to expedite a re-bidding of the process, which would include a study to make a proper determination as to whether or not a Project Labor Agreement is warranted.
“I know the DOT and Governor’s office are concerned about moving this project along as quickly as possible. They are very hands-on. Their approach will do that in a reasonable manner,” Senator Bonacic said.
In the meantime, the legislation has been introduced in the Senate and Assembly to authorize the payment for work done at the exit 122 location. Substantial work, including building, clearing, seeding, and construction staging and preparation, had already occurred when a State Supreme Court overturned the bid award earlier this year.
“We want to make sure our local vendors and workers can be paid for this important project,” Senator Bonacic said.