Thruway Authority to Decide Today on Toll Hike

November 9, 2012 Updated Nov 9, 2012 at 1:14 PM EDT

By WKBW News

November 9, 2012 Updated Nov 9, 2012 at 1:14 PM EDT

NYS (WKBW) - A decision regarding a toll hike could be made in just a few hours and many say it's going to hurt.

Thousands of trucks pour through Buffalo and Western New York traveling on the thruway, and shipping much needed products in, out, and through the area. With a vote expected this afternoon truckers say it could affect not only their profit margins, but the price of goods throughout the state.

This is a forty five percent toll hike, the money brought will pay for repairs on roads where trucks cause major wear and tear along with every day maintenance to keep those roads safe.

But leaders in several communities worry this will force drivers onto local roadways to avoid the tolls causing wear and tear.

The other concern? How it will affect your pocketbook.

Price Trucking in Buffalo ships in and out the Queen City, and owner Jonathan Price says his costs are already sky high because of the current tolls that are charged on the thruway.

He says with an additional increase, especially one so large at 45%, he would be forced to pass along costs which eventually end up with consumers. Things shipped by trucks like bread and eggs to construction materials could all go up in price if the thruway authority approves the hike.

"Everything needs to be shipped by truck. Without us, it's going to be difficult for people to have their normal lives. You need food, clothing and everything else. It's sad. You leave New York you pay a toll then you don't pay one until you get back," said Jonathan Price of Price Trucking Company.

Earlier in the month the thruway authority proposed what they called a modest 45% toll increase. A spokesman for the agency says there is a finance committee meeting this afternoon, but no agenda has been set.

The thruway authority is reportedly going to make a final decision about this toll hike later today.

Eyewitness News will have much more on this story coming up tonight at 5 PM. and 6 P.M. including what people think about the timing of this vote with much attention being paid downstate in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

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