Following a report in The Record detailing how Governor Phil Murphy surrendered $850 million of federal transportation funds to New York that should have come to New Jersey, Senate Republican Leader Steven Oroho blasted the Murphy administration for its weak representation of Garden State farepayers and taxpayers.
“It looks like the longer the Murphy administration negotiated with New York, the worse the deal kept getting for New Jersey,” said Oroho. “If it wasn’t for the federal deadline to come to an agreement, Governor Murphy may have given away even more than the $850 million he ultimately surrendered to New York. It was a total failure.”
At stake was the division of $14.2 billion in federal pandemic relief funds earmarked for tri-state transportation needs in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
New York refused to abide by a standard formula from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) that has been used previously to split regional transportation grants. 47 other states used the FTA formula to determine how they would split their federal COVID-19 transit funding.
Under the standard formula, New Jersey should have received approximately $3.5 billion.
According to The Record, New Jersey’s proposed share during negotiations with New York successively dropped to $3.1 billion, $2.7 billion, and finally to the $2.6 billion that was accepted.
Connecticut, in contrast, did not give up anything in the deal and received exactly what it should have under the federal formula. It was only New Jersey that gave up money it should have gotten.
In November when the deal was announced, Oroho said, “Instead of refusing the premise of an outrageous proposal, the Murphy administration folded and agreed to give New York everything it wanted and more. NJ Transit farepayers and New Jersey taxpayers will suffer as a result.”
Oroho has repeatedly called for the Murphy administration to take a tougher stance with New York on financial matters, including its unfair taxation of New Jerseyans, which costs both the state and individual taxpayers billions of dollars annually.
“New York is like a circling shark that keeps biting chunks out of our finances, but instead of fighting back, the Murphy administration is chumming the waters through its weak representation of New Jersey to invite additional attacks,” added Oroho. “Governor Murphy’s cumulative failures to stand up for the Garden State have cost us billions of dollars already. When will he finally grow a backbone with New York?”