- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 5, 2014

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - The state comptroller reports 78 percent of New York’s Dedicated Highway and Bridge Trust Fund is paying for debt and state agency operations.

The fund, established in 1991 to commit money to highways and bridges, is replenished from gas and petroleum business taxes, vehicle licensing fees and a rental car tax.

Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says taxpayers have paid “billions in taxes and fees” but much is now “siphoned off.”

The report Wednesday says the fund’s $3.8 billion disbursements in the 2012-13 fiscal year included $1.6 billion for state operations, including Department of Transportation snow and ice removal and Department of Motor Vehicles staff.

Another $1.5 billion paid debt.

Cuomo administration officials say that’s actually paying for construction projects.

The administration has proposed raising new capital disbursements to 23.5 percent.

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