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March 5, 1998 

Council fights for New York's share of highway $

New York State's fair share of federal transportation dollars may be in peril.

ISTEA, passed in 1991, expired last September. A six-month extension continued original funding allocations but expires at the end of March.

The Business Council is part of the ISTEA Works Coalition, a group of 19 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia with a shared interest in ISTEA funding allocations.

As Congress debates renewed funding, there is pressure, especially from southern states, for a formula that fails to consider states' investments in mass transit, Ehrlich said.

The Senate has passed a bill that would increase highway funding by $425.8 billion over five years. New York's share of this increase would average about $161 million a year.

However, that bill provides no increase in transit funding.

"The coalition is still fighting for increased transit funding," Gianakos said. "No transit increase effectively penalizes investments in mass transit."