Assembly GOP Disappointed Over Blocked Transportation Bills

Photo courtesy of the Governor’s Office
A Republican-sponsored bill in the Assembly would have changed the name of the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge back to the Tappan Zee Bridge, however, it was blocked by Democrats in the Assembly Transportation Committee.

Assembly Republicans are upset that 11 bills sponsored by the minority conference were blocked by Democrats on the Assembly Transportation Committee last month.

Some of the measures blocked by the Committee on April 25 include restoring the name of the Tappan Zee Bridge, keeping ride-hailers safe from sex offenders, and reducing transportation costs for farmers. 

The minority conference proposals also included measures that would honor Gold Star Families, Eagle Scouts and Girl Scouts and make it easier to become a bone marrow donor.

One bill (A.3477, DeStefano) would have disqualified drivers from receiving a permit to drive for companies such as Uber and Lyft if they have been convicted of a sex offense. The disqualification would last for as long as the person is required to register as a sex offender

“We have seen too many good bills blocked simply because the sponsor doesn’t sit on the other side of the isle. Protecting riders from potentially-dangerous individuals using driving services to find their next victim is a common-sense measure, and it’s even more necessary at a time when crime in New York is skyrocketing,” said Assembly Minority Leader Will Barclay, R-Pulaski.

The full list of transportation bills proposed by the Assembly Minority but “held for consideration” by the Assembly Democrats is:

  • Congestion Pricing Repeal – Repeals congestion pricing (A.4660, McGowan)
  • Background Checks for Transportation Network Company Drivers – Requires a person to be disqualified from receiving a permit to drive for companies such as Uber and Lyft if that driver has been convicted of a sex offense and keeps this disqualification in place for the entire period that individual is required to register as a sex offender (A.3477, DeStefano)
  • Free Agricultural Food Transport – Allows agricultural food product transporters to transport their products free of charge while using New York state thruways (A.5352, Gray)
  • Bone Marrow Donation Enrollment – Allows for individuals to enroll in the national bone marrow donor program at the time of application for or renewal of a driver’s license or non-driver identification card (A.4075, Ra)
  • Gold Star License Plates – Eliminates the registration fee for Gold Star Mothers’ and Gold Star Family Members’ distinctive license plates (A.2062, Hawley)
  • Eagle Scouts License Plate – Establishes a distinctive plate honoring Eagle Scouts (A.4147, Durso)
  • Girl Scout Gold Award License Plates – Establishes a distinctive plate honoring a recipient of the Girl Scout Gold Award (A.4437, Durso)
  • Army 10th Mountain Division License Plates – Creates distinctive license plates for the Army 10th Mountain Division (A.1538, Blankenbush)
  • Renaming the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge – Reverts the name of the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge to the Tappan Zee Bridge (A.4588, McGowan)
  • Volunteer Firefighter License Plates for Spouses – Authorizes the spouses of certain volunteer firefighters to be issued a distinctive license plate for volunteer firefighters (A.4939, Brown E.)
  • Parking Availability Study – Directs the New York state Department of Transportation and the New York City Department of Transportation to conduct a study on parking availability (A.5313, Chang)

“Measures to eliminate burdensome costs like congestion pricing and tolls for agricultural workers would go a long way toward mitigating New York’s oppressive affordability climate. It’s very disappointing these bills were blocked from a full Assembly vote,” Barclay said.