Award–winning journalist Andrea Bernstein is Senior Editor for Politics & Policy for WNYC News. She has previously served as Metro Editor, Political Director, Director of Transportation Nation, and Senior Reporter.
Governor Christie is changing his story on why NJ Transit moved its trains into a flood zone during Sandy. According to The Record newspaper, Christie is now blaming the decision on a low-level employee, whom he refuses to name.
During Sandy, NJ Transit lost almost a third of its fleet after moving its trains into a flood zone in the Meadowlands. Christie repeatedly defended his transit agency, saying Sandy was unprecedented, and that NJ Transit did the best it could have with the information it had at the time. But that story has slowly unraveled. For months, transit officials hid their Hurricane plan, citing security concerns.
Then, after a lawsuit, The Record obtained the hurricane plan -- and it explicitly directed transit officials to move trains to higher ground, away from the Meadowlands. Even after that revelation, officials gave the explanation that the agency had done the best it could.
Now, Christie tells The Record that a "low level manager made the decision on the cars." He said the employee, who he would not name, had been demoted. Christie's spokesman isn't explaining why transit officials allowed such a momentous decision to be made by a low-level manager, or why the Governor changed his story.