Will a Second Bridge Scandal Rock Chris Christie's Administration?

Perhaps this time, Chris Christie took a bridge too far? The New York Times is reporting that an investigation is underway into whether there were felony securities law violations involving the Pulaski Skyway bridge.

This investigation is a spinoff of the ongoing Bridgegate Scandal, the political-payback scheme that has rocked the second-term Governor’s administration. The investigation into why political allies and Christie Administration officials purposely snarled traffic on the George Washington Bridge has engulfed Christie, a potential contender for the Presidency.

The new investigation stems from the Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.’s office, which is working with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Reportedly, the investigation’s focuses on the Christie administration and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

According to the New York Times, investigators are looking into whether bondholders were purposely tricked into a $1.8 billion agreement in 2011 to repair the Pulaski Skyway Bridge, which connects Newark and Jersey City, New Jersey’s two largest cities.

Documents show that the Port Authority wrapped the bridge project into funding for "Lincoln Tunnel Access Infrastructure Improvements," although the Skyway is more than 9 miles the tunnel, which connects New Jersey to New York.

Christie’s administration used Port Authority money to repair the Skyway, although the Skyway is not property of the Authority, which builds and maintains infrastructure projects that benefit commerce and transportation between New York and New Jersey. The Skyway is a New Jersey state roadway not eligible for funds from the bi-state authority. This, it seems, did not stop Christie’s staff from recasting the bridge as an access route to the tunnel to secure funding.

New York investigators looking into whether this miscast is a violation of a New York State law called the Martin Act, which carries felony charges for intentionally deceiving investors and bondholders.

Meanwhile, the investigation into the George Washington Bridge scandal continues. Investigators believe it may have been orchestrated by Christie staffers and allies in retaliation against a town Mayor who did not endorse Christie's re-election bid. For four days, traffic was snarled in that town, Fort Lee, delaying commuters, emergency vehicles and school buses. Some Thruway Authority and Christie Administration officials have resigned or were fired in the wake of the scandal's revelation. 

#story_page_ below_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.