RBA PRESIDENT/CEO COMMENTS ON CUOMO’S STATE OF THE STATE

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To the Editor,

There is an aspect of Governor Cuomo’s State of the State message that doesn’t seem to have captured the attention it deserves here in Rockland and in the region. I refer to the goal of transferring the responsibility of the Canal Corp. from the Thruway Authority to the NY Power Authority.

The canal system has long been a burden to the Thruway Authority, with many having maintained that it never belonged there and was draining precious resources from the maintenance and operation of the Thruway system. By moving the Canal Corp. to another organization, significant dollars will become available to the Thruway Authority, which can then be used to offset toll increases along the length of the system — but, especially on the new Tappan Zee Bridge.

The governor’s plan to use $1B of the bank settlement money to keep tolls at present levels through 2020 is receiving a great deal of attention. And, rightly so. We should, however, also be anticipating the savings from relocation of the Canal Corp. will provide for toll offsets moving beyond that date.

Al Samuels, President/CEO Rockland Business Association

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