A coalition of cities, including Auburn, are calling on the state to increase the amount it reimburses New York municipalities for the maintenance of arterial highways.
Thirty-eight cities have arterial maintenance agreements to care for state-owned arterial highways that pass through the municipalities. The maintenance includes filling potholes and repairing guide rails. In return, the state reimburses cities 85 cents per square yard of highway.
The reimbursement rate hasn't increased since 1987, despite rising costs for maintaining the highways. In a letter to state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, the New York Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials explained that the aid is below what cities spend on maintenance for the roadways.
Data provided by the conference reveals that cities now receive more than $10.1 million to maintain over 11.9 million square yards of arterial highway.
A bill sponsored by state Sen. Tim Kennedy, a Buffalo-area Democrat who chairs the Senate Transportation Committee, and Assemblymember Nily Rozic would increase the reimbursement rate from 85 cents to $1.87 per square yard.