Last Wednesday, Comptroller DiNapoli released a report which found that just 22% of the $3.8 billion that the state collects from highway taxes and fees each year goes to capital road projects. The majority of the funds are diverted to cover state budget costs.
The Highway & Bridge Trust Fund dedicated state fund was created some 20 years ago to ensure that construction and rehabilitation of highways and bridges is appropriately funded. Most of the funds now go to support the costs of snow and ice removal by the state Department of Transportation, and staff expenses at the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Comptroller DiNapoli said:
“Taxpayers have paid billions in taxes and fees into a fund that was created to keep our roads and bridges in good repair. Now, more than three-quarters of this money is siphoned off to pay for borrowing and operating costs of state agencies, leaving fewer dollars for improving our infrastructure.”