Date: Aug 19, 2011
Press Release Number: 95-2011
Below are remarks as prepared for delivery by Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Commissioner Raymond M. Pocino, Vice President of and Eastern Regional Manager for the Laborers International Union of North America, at today’s Board meeting.
Thank you Chairman Samson – let me just say your leadership since you have become Chairman has been impressive, decisive and I believe will prove to be greatly effective.
I have been around government agencies for more than 50 years. I have been around countless Governors and Presidents for the same duration. Today though is both unique and gratifying. I can count on one hand how many elected officials have shown the courage to do what is right.
Governors Cuomo and Christie are unique leaders. They have developed a proposal which encourages economic and infrastructure development while recognizing the burdens this recession places on all of us.
But for all the Governors I have known, those two men impress me greatly.
This is a tough time to do what is right. Yet, these two leaders understood that we may have overreached with our original proposal and developed their own plan. This plan eases the burden on working New Yorkers and New Jerseyans while protecting the most vital projects to our region.
I applaud Governors Cuomo and Christie for having the courage to create a new and bipartisan model in a world of political inaction and dysfunction. All of us have watched the budget debate unfold in Washington with great frustration and anxiety, yet in this region we are lucky. We don’t have a lack of leadership…quite the contrary.
Governors Cuomo and Christie are remarkable public servants who are not afraid to be honest with the public and make the tough decisions. We at the Port have a great burden on us to reform our culture and position this agency as the most effective economic development engine in the world.
We will do that as the Governors have requested. In addition, we will renovate, build, and create the best infrastructure in the world to enhance our economic position.
On behalf of my friends Gary Labarbera and Bill Mullen and the trades men and women from New York and New Jersey – I thank Governors Cuomo and Christie for this remarkable commitment to job creation.
After 50 years advocating for economic development, I have never been as impressed with any elected officials as I am today with Governors Cuomo and Christie. Today they balanced the needs of our commuters, with the needs of our northeast economic development - it may not be politically popular – but it was honest, straight forward, and the right thing to do.
Our Governors will prove to be a national model of success. It is now incumbent upon us at the Port Authority to execute and reform this agency.
Thank you Mr. Chairman.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which is self-sufficient and does not receive tax dollars from either state, operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia, Stewart International and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; the Port Authority-Port Jersey Marine Terminal and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.