TOLLING: N.J. Turnpike budget reaches a low point

Operations will be funded at lowest level since 2007

Funding News The Record December 20, 2012
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The New Jersey Turnpike Authority’s operating budget is at it’s lowest since 2007, but layoffs will be avoided—for now.

 

That will change in 2014, when the Authority will eliminate toll workers currently under contract. The cash collectors will take a pay cut in 2013 as the Authority looks at the idea of contracting out its toll collectors moving forward.

 

“The toll collectors did indeed take a $16,000 pay cut for our full-timers and several dollars an hour for our part-timers,” Franceline Ehret, president of Local 194 of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, told The Record. “The turnpike is not a financially strapped agency. We’re providing for the state financial assistance all of the time.”

 

The New Jersey Turnpike Authority will dedicate $474 million to its operations in 2013--$1.5 million less than in 2012. A good portion of that money will go towards a more motivated attempt to settle claims. The Port Authority also wants to install highway signs next year in preparation for the 2014 Super Bowl in the Meadowlands, which will cost $250,000.

 

In addition to the operating budget, the Turnpike Authority board also gave the OK to a $408.5 million supplemental capital/general reserve fund budget that does not include an annual $22 million contribution to the state’s Transportation Trust Fund, and approved the sum of $324 million for the state’s transportation capital program.

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