Senator Fuschillo Announces Approval of State’s Transportation Budget

Budget Will Help Create Jobs, Promote Economic Development, and Upgrade State’s Transportation Infrastructure

        Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., Chairman of the Senate’s Transportation Committee, today announced passage of the State Transportation Budget which helps create jobs, promote economic development, and upgrade roads, highways, bridges, and mass transit systems across the State. The budget accomplishes these objectives through smarter investment and better coordination of state resources to maximize economic development benefits.

         “Our priority remains creating jobs and growing the economy. We accomplish both of those goals under this transportation budget,” said Senator Fuschillo (R-Merrick). “Smarter investment in capital projects will make our transportation infrastructure stronger and safer, put people back to work, and generate economic activity across the state.”

         Highlights of the transportation budget include:

         Funding for Road & Bridge Improvement Projects:

         * Increased funding for road and bridge improvement projects, including the New York Works Program which will help accelerate repair, replacement, and improvement of deficient roads and bridges. The funding is critically important at a time when approximately one in three state and local highway bridges are either structurally deficient or functionally obsolete.

         * A new New York Works Task Force which will coordinate funding among agencies and authorities, as well as recommend financing options and ways to accelerate project construction.

         * Thousands of jobs and increased economic activity will be generated through infrastructure projects funded through the DOT Capital Program and the New York Works program.

         * Help local governments pay for road improvement projects by maintaining Consolidated Highway Improvement Program (CHIPS) funding and Marchiselli funding.

         Support for Mass Transit:

         * Increased operating aid for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

         * Support for full funding of the remaining three years of the MTA’s 2010-14 Capital Program. This will enable ongoing mega-projects such as East Side Access, which will link the LIRR to Grand Central Terminal, to continue to move forward, as well as expedite other important projects. Additionally, it will allow for the completion of improvements at stations, and the purchase of new buses and subway and rail cars.

         * The MTA Capital Program is expected to create 350,000 jobs and generate $44 billion in economic activity.

         * Additional funding for non-MTA transit operators to provide services to riders.