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      Thruway Authority to lay off 234 workers; union fires back

      The New York State Thruway Authority is planning 234 layoffs to help shore up its finances, but no toll increases are planned.

      Thruway spokesman Dan Weiller says the layoffs of full-time workers will be in all regions, including the Albany headquarters. The authority employs 2,968 workers.

      Weiller says no toll increases of any type are planned.

      The layoffs are expected to save $20 million. The authority's total is budget is $977 million.

      Weiller says Wednesday the job cuts aren't linked to the rejection of a toll increase for truckers last year.

      The Civil Service Employee's Union issued this response to the proposed layoffs:

      "Governor Andrew Cuomo needs to understand that threatening layoffs, putting dedicated workers out on the street and undermining the state Thruway and Canal operations is a lousy way to promote a jobs agenda. The Governor should stop blaming workers for every situation and knock off the strong-arm tactics. He needs to keep people working if he wants any credibility on economic development."

      The authority is run by appointees of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, but is legally independent of state government. It operates the statewide toll highway and New York's canal system.

      Information from the Associated Press was used in this story.

      (This story has been updated with the number of employees at the authority. A previous version of this story indicated that the authority employs 29,068 workers, but the Thruway Authority tells us they have 2,968.)