What happened to pumping the brakes on New York State Thruway tolls this summer?

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara introduced a bill that would have allowed toll-free travel on the thruway this summer. "It not only helps get our economy moving this year but also supports tourism and local business when they need it the most," Santabarbara tweeted.

The legislation was supposed to eliminate tolls for New Yorkers in June, July, and August.

“Typically the summer months are when most people make their travel plans and these savings will encourage tourism in our upstate areas,” said Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara. “These active months are important for local businesses and we must do all we can to encourage economic activity when they need it the most.”

It's almost August and we're still paying tolls and the bill remains stalled in Committee.

The New York State Thruway Authority said in a statement, that getting rid of tolls would cut off the only dedicated revenue stream used to maintain and operate the 570-mile system each and every day.

"The Thruway is a user-fee system supported by tolls paid by the people who use it, and not one cent of local or state taxpayer dollars pays to operate or maintain it. Roughly one-third of motorists on the Thruway in the summer months are out-of-state drivers, so removing tolls gives them a free pass and shifts the cost to hard-working New York taxpayers. Our revenue must come from somewhere, and we think the fairest approach is that only those who use the Thruway, pay for it.”

Tolls remain in place on the New York State Thruway but at least the cost isn't going up, like everything else we're paying for.

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