New York State will be receiving $5.1 billion in assessments and settlements from banking institutions in the 2014/15 fiscal year. This windfall has generated significant policy discussion on how to best use these funds to the benefit of New York State.
I have always stood by good policy and the best use of these funds for Upstate New York and the 110th Assembly District would be on public infrastructure improvement; particularly needs related to transportation, sewer and water systems. Infrastructure improvement is true economic development, said Assemblymember Steck as opposed to tax credits for large corporations. Moreover, to be a top flight economy, we need to have an infrastructure that is the envy of every State in the nation, as well as our European and Asian competitors.
Assemblymember Steck stated that the settlement funds should be dispersed according to the following formula:
- Invest in infrastructure as an engine for economic development
- Use the funds for one-time expenses, such a bridge repair, highway development, sewer infrastructure replacement and other public benefit projects
- Rail improvements
- Use existing formulas, such as CHIPS, to allocate the funds equally and as efficiently as possible
There are numerous infrastructure projects in the 110th Assembly District that would serve as economic drivers for the Capital Region as a whole. These projects bring numerous construction, engineering and ancillary jobs during the building process; while the resulting infrastructure rejuvenates the Upstate Region in appearance and efficiency.