Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett has announced new appointments to the Delaware River Port Authority -- and he himself will be one of them.
Pa.’s leader also appointed five other new members to the board:
- Joann Bell of Pugliese Associates, former head of an advisory commission on African American affairs
- Joanna Cruz, an attorney and former public defender
- Walter D'Alessio of NorthMarq Capital, a real estate investment banking firm
- William Sasso of the Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young law firm
- David Simon of Jefferson Health System in Philadelphia
New members can cast their first votes at a meeting Wednesday.
The authority owns and operates four Philadelphia-area bridges spanning the river separating Pennsylvania and New Jersey, as well as the PATCO high-speed rail line between the city and Camden, N.J. The board is made up of eight members from each state. The Pennsylvania contingent also includes state treasurer Robert McCord and state auditor general Jack Wagner.
The Philadelphia Inquirer said Corbett would become chairman of the body, as was his predecessor, former Gov. Ed Rendell. The paper also said Corbett talked recently about the authority with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a fellow Republican who has pushed for cost cuts and management changes at the agency.
Gov. Jon Corzine, a Democrat, appointed New Jersey’s eight board members to five-year terms before he left office.
The agency came under fire last summer after revelations that employees were getting free rides on PATCO and the bridges. The authority canceled the free rides at Christie's request, but an arbitrator ruled in January that the workers are entitled to free commuting privileges and 100 no-cost bridge crossings a year under their contracts.
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