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NJ Transit backs off Hoboken deal

By David Wildstein, January 15 2018 10:04 am

New Jersey Transit has pulled the controversial acquisition of the Hoboken dry dock from the agenda of a special meeting called to consider only that item.

“Union Dry Dock purchase has been pulled from NJ Transit agenda, Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla tweeted this morning.  “This deal is officially dead.”

On the last full day of the Christie administration, an emergency meeting had been called on a state holiday to vote on the purchase of waterfront property at the Hoboken Dry Dock for use as a ferry maintenance facility.   Gov.-elect Phil Murphy and Bhalla had opposed the deal and asked NJ Transit to cancel their meeting.

New York Waterway, the private inter-modal transportation company that operates Port Imperial, is owned by Arthur Imperatore.  The Imperatore family has contributed over $1.5 million to candidates from both parties over the years.  He contributed $2,500 to Christie’s Leadership Matters PAC in 2015.

The sudden cancellation, made with loads of Hoboken residents on hand in Newark, should be viewed as a win for Murphy, a sign of Bhalla’s influence in the new administration, and a signal that two Christie-appointed board members were unwilling to become part of the hullabaloo.

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