New Jersey Businesses Will Pay For Christie′s Tunnel Decision


New Jersey Businesses Will Pay For Christie′s Tunnel Decision
John S. Wisniewski
December 30, 2010

Seldom - if ever- has a governor made a more anti-business decision than the one Gov. Chris...

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New Jersey Businesses Will Pay For Christie′s Tunnel Decision

December 30, 2010

New Jersey Businesses Will Pay For Christie′s Tunnel Decision
John S. Wisniewski
December 30, 2010

Seldom - if ever- has a governor made a more anti-business decision than the one Gov. Chris Christie made when he shutdown construction of the new commuter rail tunnel under the Hudson River. The many adverse ramifications of this decision are difficult to completely measure, but it′s clear New Jersey businesses will suffer from this decision in untold ways for generations.
We know that 6,000 construction jobs were immediately lost. Completion of the project would have meant the creation of 44,000 permanent new jobs, adding $10 billion to the gross regional product and $4 billion in real personal income.
In addition, we know that every dollar spent on public transportation generates $6 in economic return meaning the tunnel would have created $45 billion of new economic activity that would have benefited our businesses.

Highway congestion, which plagues every resident and business in our state, would have been cut and property values along New Jersey′s commuter rail lines would have soared.

The $3 billion in federal funding secured for this project - an unprecedented amount - is gone and it′s not coming back. This project cannot be revived thanks to the way Gov. Christie mishandled it and businesses
should be outraged at the loss of that funding.

In cancelling the tunnel, Gov. Christie claimed he was standing up for the people of New Jersey and looking out for their financial wellbeing. Well, we now know that his looking out for our financial interests will cost New Jersey taxpayers at least $271 million on top of the $3 billion he threw away.
To make matters worse, the Governor has now pledged New Jersey money to help finance New York′s subway expansion - without even seeing a plan or a cost estimate.

While the potential for cost overruns existed, the governor made no effort to find savings and make adjustments to save money. A responsible leader would have found a way to make this project work. Instead, Gov. Christie played politics and crippled New Jersey′s economic future.

For more information about the ARC Tunnel project, please feel free to contact my office at (732) 432-8460 or at AsmWisniewski@njleg.org.