Senator Fuschillo: State Budget Includes $9 Billion Investment in Transportation

     Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) announced that the New York State Budget includes an over $9 billion investment in transportation. The funding will allow for transportation infrastructure investments that will improve roads and bridges, help create jobs and promote economic development. It also makes investments in mass transit, aviation, and railroads throughout the state and eliminates the need for an increase in commercial tolls on the New York State Thruway.

     “This is a smart investment that focuses on the right priorities: rebuilding our infrastructure, creating jobs, and growing our economy. It also provides critical support for mass transit, railroads, and aviation, as well as funding which will help prevent an increase in commercial tolls on the Thruway. These initiatives will help ensure that New York State continues to head in the right direction,” said Senator Fuschillo, Chairman of the Senate’s Transportation Committee.

     The state budget will include:

     Funding for Road & Bridge Improvement Projects

     • $3.7 billion for the first year of a new two-year Department of Transportation capital program to help finance critical transportation infrastructure projects throughout the state.

     • $300 million in new state funding for the New York Works program to maintain, repair, and replace critical highway, bridge, and other components of the transportation infrastructure, so that the useful life of these assets will be prolonged.

     • Over $477 million in total local highway aid to help local governments repair and improve their roads and bridges. This includes over $438 million under the Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement Program (CHIPS), a $75 million increase over last year’s total, and over $39 million through the Marchiselli program. The CHIPS funding increase is the first in five years and will help local governments improve their infrastructure, create jobs, and promote economic development.

     • Thousands of jobs and new economic development will be created through these investments.

     Support for Mass Transit

     • Over $4.7 billion to mass transit systems throughout the state.

     • Increased operating aid for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), NICE Bus in Nassau County, and Suffolk Transit in Suffolk County.

     • Funding to help the MTA fully offset the loss of revenue from the reduction of the MTA payroll tax.

     • Additional capital funding for non-MTA transit systems throughout the state.

     Aviation Investment

     • Increased funding for the Airport Improvement Program to ensure that New York State is eligible to receive the maximum amount of federal funding for airport projects.

     • Additional funding for the AIR 99 Capital Funding program to help ensure that New York’s aviation industry, which contributes over $50 billion in annual economic activity and employs nearly 40,000 residents, remains competitive with neighboring states.

     Funding for Railroads

     • $10 million for freight rail capital improvements. Up to $3 million of this funding is to be used for a one year pilot program to upgrade diesel train engines owned by the Long Island Rail Road to improve emissions standards.

      Funding to Prevent Commercial Toll Increase on the Thruway

     • Includes the State takeover of personnel costs of the State Police Division which patrols the Thruway, eliminating the need for a commercial toll increase.