Tuesday, July 15, 2014
 

 

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Environmental groups call on Cuomo to end “secrecy” over TZB financing

ALBANY – The state’s Public Authorities Control Board is expected to vote on Wednesday on what some environmental groups are calling “Governor Andrew Cuomo’s $511 million clean water raid.” 

They are accusing the administration of blocking all attempts to access basic financial information regarding their plan, as well as how they intend to pay for construction of a new Tappan Zee bridge.

Riverkeeper and a consortium of environmental groups said on Monday Cuomo failed to release the official application required by state law for a loan from the clean water fund; “barreled ahead despite the looming threat of the loss of much-needed federal funds;” and “refused” to account for more than $2 million in outstanding  bridge construction costs, said Riverkeeper spokeswoman Tina Posterli.

“We are calling on the Cuomo administration to release the entire financial plan for the bridge and put it before the public,” Posterli said. “We are also asking the Public Authorities Control Board to step up to the plate and reject this plan on Wednesday. Clean water funds have never been used for a transportation project and if it is approved it would set a terrible precedent for New York and across the nation.”

Riverkeeper Paul Gallay said the plan to raid the clean water funds to finance the bridge “has simply been rubber-stamped by the governor’s own hand-picked team.”