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Port Authority Asks Experts for Reform Advice

A special committee, created by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey in light of the scandal involving the George Washington Bridge lane closures, convened a panel of experts Monday to discuss potential reform measures.

Port Authority vice-chairman Scott Rechler
Port Authority vice-chairman Scott Rechler hosts a meeting of the agency’s Special Oversight Committee (Port Authority of New York & New Jersey)

Scott Rechler, vice-chairman of the Port Authority, began the morning session by recognizing a “creeping dysfunction” that has “infiltrated the governance and organizational structure” of the bi-state agency.

“In the past few years, we have made incremental changes,” Rechler said. “And while these actions have brought change for the better, recent events have made it clear that we must think more boldly.”

Four officials at the Port Authority have resigned since the Bridgegate debacle began unraveling earlier this year.

Rechler indicated “everything should be on the table” when discussing agency reform.

A general consensus among the expert panel was that the agency reduce “political influence,” specifically by limiting the powers granted to the governors of New York and New Jersey.

The panel also criticized the Port Authority for getting involved with projects that do not fit within the agency’s business model.

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