TTA Article 78 Proceeding against the Port Authority in New York Supreme Court
Last Updated: 12/23/16 at 2:18 PM
The public has borne and is still bearing the lion’s share of the cost of rebuilding the World Trade Center. But there is nothing in the public record to explain why the public should have assumed billions of dollars of Silverstein Properties’ obligation. There were no public hearings held to weigh the pros and cons. At the same time, Silverstein has prospered immeasurably from his WTC connection.
The closed door decisions that cost the public so dearly could never take place in today’s Port Authority. But coming clean about past decisions is part of the reform everyone keeps talking about. We believe that this ruling brings us a giant step closer to a Port Authority that does not hide mischief and bad choices behind the absurd contention that the public needs to be protected from itself.
The Port Authority seemed to take for granted they couldn’t lose this, but we had faith in our system of justice and we were right.
Status Update — 12/23/16
We followed up yesterday on the letter we sent the judge in October (see below). The response from the Court was that we need to file a motion “for the appropriate relief”. We have taken this matter as far as we are going to on a pro sebasis and will engage an attorney to take this battle forward. A motion to hold the Port Authority in contempt of court will be filed in January.
Again, as we stated in the update below: We brought this suit because the public was charged billions of dollars that were at one time the sole obligation of Silverstein Properties. If the Port Authority acted properly in shifting so much of the burden to the public — without public hearings — why are they fighting disclosure of the details? They can drag it out, but they won’t win.
Status Update — 10/19/16
On 8/30/16, the Court’s decision and judgment gave the Port Authority 30 days to produce all the documents that were responsive to our 8/5/11 Freedom of Information request. On 9/22/16 they wrote to the judge to request another 2 weeks to comply and/or file a substantive motion. It was doubtful that they would fight the judgment because they would be unlikely to prevail — and doubtful, based on their track record they would comply. On 10/13/16, they produced some of the expected documents, ignored others, and said they had nothing more that was responsive to the request.
That is an indefensible position. We wrote to the Court to ask for a conference where the matter can be addressed. We are waiting for a reply. We brought this suit because the public was charged billions of dollars that were at one time the sole obligation of Silverstein Properties. If the Port Authority acted properly in shifting so much of the burden to the public, why are they fighting disclosure of the details?
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