State lawmakers in New Jersey and New York said Oct. 24 that
tighter oversight of the Port Authority is needed from the two states. The
bi-state agency has a budget of nearly $5 billion a year.
Since its inception by Congress in 1921, the agency has not
had to answer to lawmakers in either state. The agency, which is only subject
to legislation approved in both states, built and operates many of the most
heavily traveled bridges, tunnels, airports and seaports in the New York Harbor
New York Assemblyman Richard Brodsky, D-Greenburgh, said he
plans to introduce a bill to improve oversight from the states. A similar
version also is being considered in New Jersey.
Brodsky's effort would create an independent inspector
general's office to police Port Authority officers and employees. It also would
create a budget office to review the financial activities of the agency.
The proposed inspector general would be jointly appointed by
the governors of both states and would serve a five-year term.
A spokesman for the Port Authority said they support more
"We look forward to working with the governors and both
state legislature's in accomplishing this," Port Authority spokesman Marc
LaVorgna told The Star-Ledger.
In New Jersey, Sen. Loretta Weinberg, D-Teaneck, is eyeing
similar legislation that would make reforms go farther and be permanent.
"They spend a great deal of our money," she told the
newspaper. "We would like to make sure all of their business is transparent and