CHIPs Funding Essential To Economic Development

Assemblyman Michael Fitzpatrick (R,C,I-Smithtown) today joined with assembly members and senators from across the state to urge Gov. Cuomo and legislative leaders to increase the amount of funding the state provides for the Consolidated Highway Improvement Program, commonly known as CHIPs.

“Our transportation system, which includes roads, bridges and highways, is essential to everyone in New York,” said Fitzpatrick. “It contributes to economic development, job creation and our wonderful quality of life here in the Empire State. Proper maintenance and funding are essential to keeping our roads and bridges in good repair, but local governments will not be able to maintain them without more substantial state aid.”

A recent report from State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, “Cracks in the Foundation,” called 32 percent of New York's local bridges deficient and 40 percent of local roads fair or poor and getting worse. According to data from the U.S. Department of Transportation, roughly one-third of the 8,535 bridges maintained by New York’s local governments are structurally deficient or functionally obsolete. Fitzpatrick said the state needs to promote efforts to strengthen capital planning, increase access to funding and coordinate local infrastructure investment.