- Associated Press - Saturday, December 20, 2014

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - The New York Thruway Authority’s $2 billion budget plan for next year includes nearly $1 billion to keep building a new Tappan Zee Bridge in the lower Hudson Valley.

Executive Director Thomas Madison says by the end of 2015 the authority and Canal Corp. will reduce operating costs more than $200 million with personnel reductions and expense controls and refinance old debt to save $100 million. He says that will help “keep tolls as low as possible” while advancing the project.

Bridge expenses are nearly $750 million this year from new borrowing.

The fiscally conservative Empire Center says the toll revenue targets in the budget adopted Friday equate to a roughly 4 percent system-wide toll increase in 2015.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says tolls depend on the level of state subsidy.

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