Feds To Audit NJ’s Use Of Sandy Recovery Funds

Gov. Chris Christie

Gov. Chris Christie

STATE – Gov. Chris Christie’s administration is facing a federal audit of the state’s use of $25 million in Superstorm Sandy recovery aid, U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone announced today.

The inspector general of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will audit the bidding process for New Jersey’s “Stronger Than The Storm” campaign. Democrats contend that the state awarded the contract to a firm that charged $2 million more than a comparable bidder.

“Working with my New Jersey colleagues, we had to fight hard to get the Sandy aid package passed by assuring others in Congress the funding was desperately needed and would be spent responsibly,” Pallone (D-NJ-6) said in a statement.  “I also raised concerns that Gov. Christie and his family appeared in taxpayer-funded advertisements during an election year.”

Christie administration officials chose MNW to produce the “Stronger Than The Storm” television commercial campaign, which featured Christie and his family in the tourism advertisements, at a cost of $4.7 million. Another firm, Sigma Group, submitted a $2.5 million bid and did not include the governor in its campaign proposal.

MNW noted that its bid for the entire marketing campaign was more than $1 million less than the next lowest bidder

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