Skelos wants budget surplus used on LI infrastructurePosted: Updated:
State Sen. Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) today told the Long Island Association that he wants the $5 billion state budget surplus to finish delayed infrastructure projects on the Island.
Among those projects are the widening of the aging Sagtikos Parkway and a new Republic Long Island Rail Road station.
"Many of our roads and bridges are in a state of disrepair and that doesn't allow future development of our counties," says Skelos.
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone liked what he heard from Skelos.
"It's going to invest in projects that are going to create a brighter future and a more sustainable economic growth for our region," says Bellone.
Construction experts, like the Long Island Contractor Association's Jim Pratt, warn that an infrastructure "czar" is needed to keep projects on track and to cut through regulatory red tape. Meanwhile, environmentalist Adrienne Esposito cautions that water and land must be protected amid construction projects.
All of the funding would require legislative approval, but Skelos does not believe that will be an issue.