Under pressure from McLaughlin, agency moves toward reform Under pressure from business owners, taxpayers and elected officials, the Thruway Authority has finally eliminated its plans for a 45 percent toll increase on commercial trucks. Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin (R,C-Melrose), who joined Assemblyman Jim Tedisco to hold a public meeting in September decrying the Thruway’s proposal, is a co-sponsor of the Thruway Accountability Act, which would address the Authority’s financial woes through consolidation and reform rather than toll increases. Many of these themes are now being considered by the Thruway, signaling a move in the right direction, but McLaughlin cautioned that no common-sense measure should be considered accomplished until it is fully implemented. “While I am certainly pleased that businesses and taxpayers have made their voices heard and have defeated the Thruway’s proposed toll hike, one is left to wonder why it took this long for the Authority to come to this common-sense conclusion,” said McLaughlin. “The fact that the Thruway’s first inclination was to raise tolls rather than examine its own finances to find savings is further proof that the agency is completely mismanaged and in need of new leadership. Today’s news is a victory for New Yorkers, but we must continue to hold the Thruway’s feet to the fire and ensure that the sorelyneeded reforms being considered are implemented, including the continued need for a forensic audit. “I thank Governor Cuomo for working with Chairman Tom Madison to find alternative ways to cut costs and reject the proposed toll hike.” “Thanks to the leadership and advocacy of Assemblymen McLaughlin and Tedisco, we are very pleased that the Thruway Authority has withdrawn its ill-advised 45 percent truck toll hike. Had it gone through, it would have done tremendous damage to the Upstate economy,” said Brian Sampson, Executive Director of Unshackle Upstate. “Assemblyman McLaughlin should be commended for his work in making sure that his constituents were not hit with higher costs for everyday necessities like food, clothing and gas.” “I am pleased by the tremendous dedication and leadership by Assemblyman McLaughlin and many of his colleagues on both sides of the aisle in working with the business community to help avert this costly and devastating toll hike proposal. Through this collaborative and comprehensive effort, New York’s toll payers and business owners

have a little more reason to believe in the responsiveness of State government”, said Mike Durant, State Director, NFIB. Thruway Authority Executive Director Thomas Madison today announced that his agency will seek to find roughly $85 million in savings through cost-cutting measures, eliminating the need for the proposed 45 percent toll increase on commercial trucks. Assemblyman McLaughlin represents the 108th district, which consists of parts of Rensselaer, Albany, Greene and Columbia counties. For more information, please visit Assemblyman McLaughlin’s official website. ###

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