Herkimer, NY (WIBX) - Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney is speaking out against the state Thruway Authority's proposed toll hike.
Tenney held a press conference at Exit 30 in Herkimer to talk about the hikes and the negative impact the state's trucking industry will face.

"This is a 45 percent increase on commercial trucks with three axles or more," Tenney said. "What that does is it increases the cost of doing business in New York, because many of our small business owners and truckers, obviously, all rely on the New York State Thruway to deliver their goods to the market."

She says the hike hurts many of New York's municipalities, too.

"That mean's an increase in the cost of pricing and makes New York businesses less competitive," Tenney said. "A secondary problem that it causes is people are going to avoid the Thruway. So, if you have trucks going off the Thruway and going onto secondary roads, you're going to be seeing more wear and tear on the secondary roads."

Tenney says many towns cannot afford the cost to repair roads and would have to either raise taxes or suffer.

Alex Craska, vice president of C.P. Craska, in Ilion, says his company has considered closing shop because of the cost of business.

"If this happens, it's going to be the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back," Craska said. "I feel that New York State... the bubble's just going to pop and New York State is going to be in trouble. There's a lot of businesses that would be either leaving or going out of business. I don't see how that helps anyone."

Among other concerns, Tenney also called the Thruway Authority's actions a form of "back-door borrowing."

"The only reason [authorities] are out there is because they're third-party borrowing entities," Tenney said. "We use them to borrow money so we have to go to a state-wide referendum where the people have the right to vote for government works and government spending."

Comments on the proposed hike will be accepted until August 24th. If the toll hike is approved, it will be implemented in October.