NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Already embroiled in a criminal probe over lane closures at the George Washington Bridge, Gov. Chris Christie’s administration is facing an investigation over a second bridge.
The Manhattan district attorney’s office and the Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating whether $1.8 billion in funding to repair the Pulaski Skyway and related projects was misrepresented in bond documents by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, a person familiar with the investigation but not authorized to discuss it publicly told The Associated Press. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity.
And a government official with direct knowledge said the Manhattan district attorney’s office is investigating.
Besides federal laws and regulations, New York state has its own securities law, called the Martin Act. It allows for criminal charges for making false statements when selling bonds and some other financial instruments; the charges can be felonies. The law also allows authorities to bring civil suits.
In an emailed statement, the Port Authority said the agreement for the bridge project “was analyzed and negotiated by lawyers on all sides” and the bond disclosures were reviewed by a law firm that has served as underwriters’ counsel for the Port Authority for 25 years.
A spokeswoman for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. declined to comment Tuesday. Spokespeople for Christie and the SEC also declined to comment. The New York Times first reported the investigation.
The decaying, 82-year-old Skyway connecting Newark and Jersey City carries more than 70,000 vehicles in and out of Jersey City, Hoboken and Manhattan daily. The inbound lanes of the bridge were closed in April for two years for the $1 billion project.
The 3.5-mile steel truss bridge is an iconic New Jersey symbol, featured in Orson Welles’ 1938 broadcast “War of the Worlds,” and in the opening credits of “The Sopranos.”
Questions had been raised after Christie began to push for the project after he pulled the plug on a $9 billion rail tunnel from New Jersey into Manhattan in 2010 — a project that was to have used $3 billion from the Port Authority.
The Skyway is owned and operated by New Jersey and offers a direct route to the Holland Tunnel in Jersey City. But the agreement signed in 2011 between the Port Authority and New Jersey’s Department of Transportation labeled it an approach to the Lincoln Tunnel, which is several miles away and requires what amounts to a 90-degree turn to the north.
According to published reports, the Port Authority isn’t authorized to pay for work on access roads to the Holland Tunnel because the tunnel predates the formation of the Port Authority in 1921. The agency can pay for roads that lead to the Lincoln Tunnel.
The Record of Woodland Park first reported on the Port Authority’s mention of the Lincoln Tunnel in the Pulaski documents.
Christie’s administration also is the target of state and federal investigations over lane closures at the George Washington Bridge last fall that appear to have been ordered for political payback. Several Port Authority officials have resigned and Christie fired a staffer who was revealed to have ordered the closures in an email.
Christie has denied any advance knowledge of the lane closure scheme. A taxpayer-funded report prepared by a law firm commissioned by Christie absolved the governor of any wrongdoing.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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