NY Times Defends the Port Authority

When a recent audit of the Port Authority's spending at ground zero turned up $3.8 billion in cost overruns, the Governors of New York and New Jersey went on the offensive. Michael Powell provides some cover for the agency.
February 11, 2012, 1pm PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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While New York and New Jersey's top politicians were quick to criticize the spending of the Port Authority and its former head, Christopher Ward, Powell defends the cost overruns as the inevitable result of political decisions.

Seemingly overlooked in the audit was the unrealistic schedule and cost estimates that Ward identified when taking over the Authority in 2008. Furthermore, "The authority chairman, David Samson, a Christie appointee, also declined to plant a tomahawk in Mr. Ward's forehead. 'The costs were inevitable,' he said, 'once the decision was made in 2008 that we'd be open for the 10th anniversary.'"

According to Powell, "Amid the political bellowing, only one fellow remained steadfast in support of Mr. Ward: Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. He had watched as Mr. Ward transformed ground zero into an elegant memorial site that draws millions of tourists."

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Published on Thursday, February 9, 2012 in The New York Times
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