ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The New York State Thruway is proposing a toll increase of 5% starting January 1, 2024 and another 5% on January 1, 2027. That means from Albany to Buffalo (Exits 24-47), it could cost EZ-Pass holders an additional 60 cents one way in 2024.
This would be the first system wide increase for EZ-Pass customers in 14 years. New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli recently issued a report on the proposal.
“What we concluded is that the Thruway Authority should really consider a toll increase as the last option,” said DiNapoli.
He said toll increases would be another burden at a time when New Yorkers are dealing with rising costs due to inflation. Some lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have also been vocal about their opposition to rising prices.
DiNapoli gave recommendations to the Thruway Authority, one of them being to make sure it’s internal operations are cost-effective.
In a statement, Thruway Authority Spokesperson Jennifer Givner said in part,“ New Yorkers have two ways to pay for their highways— tax dollars or toll dollars. The Thruway Authority is operated and maintained solely as a user free system, and is not supported by any federal, state, or local taxpayer funding. Thruway toll revenues are projected to decline $240 million over 2020-2025 from levels prior to COVID…We believe this modest proposal will begin to raise additional revenue to support the long-term financial needs of New York’s’ main transportation corridor and engine for economic activity.”
“There is a lot of money coming out of Washington for transportation,” said DiNapoli. “We saw another public authority, the MTA benefit to the tune of billions of dollars coming from the federal government. Maybe it’s time for the Thruway Authority working with Senator Schumer and our congressional delegation to see if they might not be able to compete for some of those federal monies.”
Before the toll increases can happen, public hearings must first take place.