LICA Testimony to the Joint Legislative Committee on Transportation (Jan. 26, 2021)

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Marc Herbst, Executive Director
Long Island Contractors’ Association, Inc.
New York State Joint Legislative Hearing on Transportation
Tuesday, January 26, 2021, 9:30 AM


Good morning, Chairs Krueger and Weinstein, and distinguished members of the joint legislative budget panel. My name is Marc Herbst, Executive Director of the Long Island Contractors’ Association.

The Long Island Contractors’ Association (LICA) represents the interests of Long Island’s premier heavy construction industry, general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers and industry suppliers. Our focus is on the building and maintenance of infrastructure, something that has been critical to the rebuilding effort in New York over the past year. We focus on highways, roads, bridges, transit systems as well as utilities and other public works. Heavy construction on Long Island employs nearly 6,200 people and accounts
for another 16,700 indirect jobs, and our industry contributes $5.4 billion annually to the region’s economy.

As you know, the last year has been incredibly difficult. Not just for our industry, but for every New Yorker. We are in unprecedented times. The immeasurable loss we have all encountered is beyond compare, and the economic toll on businesses across the state has been profound.

Having said that, I’d like to applaud Governor Cuomo for his leadership in these trying times, and for continuing to fund the final year of the current two year capital program at its current level. Now more than ever, this funding has made a difference for the better.

I’m sure I speak on behalf of the entire industry when I thank the Governor for putting infrastructure needs front and center, to help pull our state out of the dire financial situation COVID has put us in. The rebuilding of roads, highways, bridges, sewers and more will continue to provide good jobs in tough times, leading us toward a strong economic recovery.

I believe I also speak for many when I say that New York is ready to receive it’s fair share from Washington. When we do, our industry is prepared to move forward with these critical, high-priority projects on Long Island:

  • Reactivation of New York Route 347 reconstruction
  • Meadowbrook Parkway and Southern State parkway interchange improvements
  • Rehabilitation and Improvement of the Oakdale Merge on New York Route 27
  • Capacity expansion of the Sagtikos Parkway
  • Extension of the third lanes on the Northern State Parkway

These projects will not only provide good jobs, but enhance driving safety as more and more people transition back to driving to avoid crowds on mass transportation.

In conclusion, it is my hope that, soon, the experience of last year will only be a memory in our rearview mirrors. Until then, I hope everyone remains safe, and I look forward to brighter times ahead.

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