ALBANY, N.Y. – A local official has introduced legislation targeting the Thruway Authority and aims to fix its problems.
Republican Leader Brian Kolb (R,C,I-Canandaigua) has introduced legislation, the “Thruway Authority Accountability Act” – specifically designed to fix “chronic problems and make the Thruway Authority work.”
According to Kolb, the Thruway Authority Accountability Act would restore accountability, increase efficiency and save taxpayer dollars by making structural reforms and statutory changes to the Thruway Authority.
The legislation would merge Thruway Authority with the Department of Transportation, create a new board whose members must have transportation expertise, require a forensic audit of Thruway finances, and establish a rational Thruway toll plan.
Highlights of Leader Kolb's legislation include the following:
- Merge the Thruway Authority with the State Department of Transportation (DOT);
- Create a new Thruway Authority Board whose members must have transportation expertise;
- Make the State DOT Commissioner Chair of the Thruway Authority Board;
- Require a comprehensive forensic audit of Thruway Authority finances every three years – and release the audit's findings to the public;
- Require any proposed Thruway toll hikes – and the reasons for the requested increases – be clearly identified in the State DOT's budget; and
- Save taxpayer dollars by consolidating the Thruway Authority's overlapping functions within the State DOT and streamlining the Authority through attrition.