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Chris Christie: Overhaul Delaware River Port Authority

July 30, 2010

Chris Christie

No one is surprized that our Governor has weighed in on the absolute mess at the DRPA.  Kudos to Domenick DiCicco for his lead on the need for DRPA reform.  Apparently the resignation of Michael Joyce is not enough of a shake up at the DRPA.  The governor now has made public his reform plan for the DRPA. 

In a letter to the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA), Governor Chris Christie today called on the authority to act swiftly to improve transparency and restore public confidence in the bi-state agency by adopting an extensive list of much-needed reforms jointly endorsed by Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, as well as additional reforms separately advocated by the Christie Administration.

“As public officials, it is our responsibility to the people to ensure that government is accountable, transparent and ethical in the conduct of its business.  In the light of the recent concerns of abuse and mismanagement at the Delaware River Port Authority, it is clear that reforms are immediately needed from the Board and management of the authority,” 

Governor Christie said.   

“I am committed to ensuring that these critical reforms outlined are adopted in a timely manner to restore the public’s confidence in the authority and I am pleased that Governor Rendell supports reform at the DRPA as well.” 


Governor Christie and Governor Rendell agree that significant policy changes be implemented immediately, including.  

  • Full oversight, review and audit of the Authority’s budget and performance by the Pennsylvania Auditor General (or an outside auditor) and the New Jersey Comptroller
  • Compliance with Open Public Meeting and Records Acts and Sunshine Acts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey
  • Elimination of  the existing separate state caucus system to allow for more public transparency
  • Enacting  a “no gifts” policy  for Board members which clarifies that no Commissioner or employee of the Authority or a family member shall solicit or accept any gift or anything of value for personal benefit
  • Elimination of all free toll/fare perks for employees and retirees
  • Elimination of all car allowances


In addition, Governor Christie is proposing several other critical reforms: 

  • Requiring that all charitable contributions be presented to the Board for approval by resolution
  • Strengthening the Board Conflict of Interest policy to make clear that Commissioners and employees may not use DRPA time or resources to pursue any political activities
  • Clarifying the newly proposed Political Contributions policy as being consistent with the New Jersey pay-to-play law P.L. 2005, ch. 51 by requiring vendors and vendor principals to disclose all political contributions made within the past four years


In his letter, the Governor said he “will continue to scrutinize the actions of the DRPA for adherence to all of these reforms and will not hesitate to exercise my veto authority over any DRPA Board action that does not conform.”

4 Comments leave one →
  1. SpeakUpNJ permalink
    July 30, 2010 9:31 am

    Support this Governor…he will reform NJ…give him the opportunity! When you start to hear loud criticisms of him, you know he must have uncovered yet another real seat of corruption in our state government. I appreciate this sentence from above. It shows he will not let up… “(he)will continue to scrutinize the actions of the DRPA for adherence to all of these reforms and will not hesitate to exercise my veto authority over any DRPA Board action that does not conform.” Thank You Gov!

  2. Veterans Wife permalink
    July 30, 2010 11:34 am

    DRPA is a cash cow for South Jersey board members, special interests, and a nest for political patronage jobs.

    The trail leads to other authorities which contract the same engineers, lawyers, consultants, etc.

    NJ and PA Governors must remain aligned, as they are now, to rid the bi-state Authority of rampant corruption and egregious spending.

  3. August 2, 2010 4:16 pm

    A sledgehammer might help.


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