The Asbury Park Press has yet another ill-informed editorial this morning, Christie off the rails on tunnell.
Gov. Chris Christie’s announcement Thursday that he was pulling the plug on a new Hudson River rail tunnel that had been more than a decade in the planning stages was his latest in a line of “my way or the highway” decrees.
It is a pattern that is increasingly jeopardizing New Jersey’s ability to work collaboratively with others — its neighbors, public employee unions and members of the opposite political party — to address the short- and long-term challenges facing the state.
If New Jersey wanted a governor to work collaboratively with our neighbors, public employee unions and Democrats, the crew that got us into the fiscal mess we are in, we would have reelected Jon Corzine. Yes, even our neighbors, Pennsylvania and New York who, until Christie came along, have been fleecing New Jersey with glee.
Had the Nudniks of Neptune bothered to read their own columnist, Bob Ingle, since before former Governor Corzine broke ground on the ARC tunnel they would know that the project is an ill-concieved boondoggle that does not connect to New York’s major transportation hubs and that New Jersey taxpayers are bearing the lions share of the costs, while New York is not contributing a penny.
Christie killed the project because New Jersey taxpayers could be on the hook for between $2 and $6 billion dollars in cost overruns, in addition to the $3 billion, plus our share of the Port Authority’s contribution, that we are already on the hook for. U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LeHood appealed to Christie for time to review options to reinstate the project. Christie gave him two weeks. I’m looking forward to the Neptune Nudnik’s editorial after LeHood announces that the feds will cover the cost overruns or that New York is contributing to the project.
If LeHood comes up with an acceptable solution to the financial inequities of the project, Christie should insist upon an evalution of the wisdom of building a tunnel that ends 150 feet below Macy’s, rather than a tunnel that could be built in partnership with Amtrak that would end at Penn/Moynihan Station before he commits billions of New Jersey’s dollars to the project.
If the Neptune Nudniks don’t want to be informed by one of their own, maybe they will learn from the Star Ledger which has an excellent article on the controversy.