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tollNew York State Senator Mike Nozzolio announced the New York State Thruway Authority’s proposed 45% toll increase for commercial vehicles has been dropped.  Today, The State Thruway Authority withdrew its disastrous plan to raise highway tolls on trucks and other commercial traffic.

“The Thruway Authority’s decision not to implement the proposed toll hike is a major victory for New York’s businesses and consumers.”  said Nozzolio, " There is no question that all businesses would suffer if this proposed toll increase has been allowed and the increase in transportation costs for consumer goods would have inevitably been passed on to individuals and families in our communities."

Nozzolio has been an outspoken critic of the toll hike and had repeatedly called upon the Thruway Authority to abandon its ill-advised proposal. “Although New York State's economy is beginning to rebound, businesses and consumers simply cannot afford to absorb such a significant increase in the cost to transport their goods and services on the New York State Thruway.  The proposed toll increase would have been a major step in the wrong direction and completely contrary to the message that New York State is once again open for business” Nozzolio continued.

“I commend Governor Cuomo and the Thruway Authority for recognizing what needs to be done to ensure that New York is seen as a place where businesses can invest and grow. The Thruway is critical to the economic health of Upstate New York and I am pleased the Thruway Authority is working towards a solution to secure funding for necessary maintenance without imposing further costs on our job-creating small businesses.” said Nozzolio.

"I am gratified to see the Thruway Authority’s new leadership has dropped a planned toll increase for commercial vehicles and instead looked hard in the mirror and found ways to cut costs." agreed State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. "This is good news for New Yorkers.  Imposing a large toll increase would have hurt consumers and businesses at a time when many New Yorkers are struggling to recover from the recession."

In an effort to fight future toll increases on the Thruway, Nozzolio is sponsoring Senate Bill 762, the New York State Thruway Authority Accountability Act. This new measure would restore accountability, increase efficiency, and reduce expenses by merging the Thruway Authority under the control of the Department of Transportation. In addition, this legislation would create a new Thruway Authority Board, the members of which must have transportation or financial expertise, as well as require a comprehensive forensic audit of the Thruway Authority every three years.

“The New York State Thruway is a critical transportation link for all of Upstate New York and is vital to the entire New York State economy.  Toll increases on the Thruway are a tax increase on the already overburdened residents in my Senate district and I will continue to do all possible to fight toll hikes,” concluded Nozzolio.

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