Christie Considers Change at Top of NJ Transit System

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Wednesday, 15 Jan 2014 06:50 AM

By Elliot Jager

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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is reportedly weighing a change at the top of the New Jersey Transit system.

According to The Record in Bergen County, Christie is said to be considering replacing Jim Weinstein with Veronique "Ronnie" Hakim, who presently heads the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.

New Jersey Transit is the third largest provider of bus, rail and light rail transit, connecting the state with New York City and Philadelphia. It has 11,700 employees.

Weinstein came under criticism for not adequately preparing the agency for the impact of Hurricane Sandy. Critics say hundreds of pieces of railroad equipment, including multimillion dollar locomotives, were flood damaged because the agency did not follow its own guidelines and preemptively move them to high ground.

However, in his defense Weinstein said the locations where the equipment was left had no history of previous flooding and that no one could have anticipated the ferocity of the giant storm. Most of the losses are expected to be recouped from insurance coverage.

Christie has stood by Weinstein up to this point and could end up shifting him to the bi-state Delaware River Port Authority, The Record noted late Tuesday. But the newspaper indicated that the Republican governor's troubles over the alleged politically-motivated lane closures that snarled traffic heading into Fort Lee, N.J. from the George Washington Bridge still leaves in doubt whether any staffing changes at the transit system would be made at this time.

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