ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) — The New York State Thruway Authority and Canal Corporation Chairman Howard Milstein resigned from the board of directors reportedly a week before the deadly November snow storm.
NYS Thruway Authority officials said they’re currently searching for a new chairman and board member to fill Milstein’s now vacant seat. Milstein served four years on the board, which oversees and operates all of New York State’s 641 miles of Thruway system.
DOCUMENT | See Milstein’s resignation letter here.
The letter of resignation was dated November 13th, and Milstein’s last day was Sunday, but even the Vice Chair Donna Luh was never made aware of Milstein’s resignation until this afternoon.
“I’m the vice chair, and there are by laws and I will resume the Chair’s responsibility until a new chair is appointed by the Governor.” said Luh.
Assemblyman Sean Ryan doesn’t believe the resignation was storm related. “From what I’ve heard, the Milstein resignation has been in the works for awhile. It’s routine for people to transition during the Governor’s second term, so Milstein’s been there awhile and he’s served out the term.”
Vice Chair Donna Luh lives in WNY and now that she’s acting Chair of the Board, she says the next Thruway Board meeting December 15th will not be in NY City, where Milstein is based. She’ll push for Albany. “To have it in Albany now, the staff knows there was these changes and it’ll be good to have our staff attend the meeting and it’ll be good for that reason.”
Officials say Milstein has resigned to focus on his “many” business interests. He’s a real estate developer and a banker.
“We thank him for his dedication and service to the Thruway Authority, Canal Corporation and the people of the State of New York,” Dan Weiller, director of media relations and communications for the NYS Thruway Authority said.
According to the Authority’s website, Milstein is a business-minded individual who won Cornell’s Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2008.
While there is currently no operating chairman of the board, officials said there will be no impact on any aspect of the Authority’s operations.