A ceremony to open the first span of the new Tappan Zee Bridge has been scheduled for this coming Thursday. The official renaming of the bridge as the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge as well as the opening of the new bridge’s second span will happen sometime in 2018.

While the state has been making significant progress on constructing the new bridge, we still do not know exactly how the state is planning to pay for it. Because of the impact the costs of the new bridge could have on tolls throughout the entire Thruway, this is obviously a major concern for Unshackle Upstate.

We have taken the position that the new bridge should not paid for by those increasing tolls throughout the entire Thruway. The transportation of goods, services and people along the Thruway connects the Upstate economy. Increasing cost and access to this economic lifeline will increase the cost of business, the cost of living and further damage a still struggling Upstate economy.

A spokesperson for the Governor said that Upstate tolls will not be used to pay for the new bridge.   We thinks that’s appropriate, and we plan to hold the administration to that promise.