Some 9/11 Families Accuse NY, NJ Govs of Betrayal


cuomo-christieA group of 9/11 family members on Wednesday accused the governors of New York and New Jersey of betraying the people killed in the 2001 terrorist attacks, urging them to resolve a financial disagreement that has hobbled construction of the ground zero museum meant to memorialize those lost.

“The Port Authority’s conduct is a betrayal of those who died on 9/11. It is a betrayal of the thousands who risked everything to honor them, and it is a betrayal of the growing number of children for whom ‘9/11’ is not a first-hand memory,” said the letter to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who jointly control the agency that owns the World Trade Center site.

Of the many thousands of family members, more than 200 signed the missive, voicing support for the foundation that controls the memorial and museum while excoriating the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Work on the museum has been slowed since last year, with both sides locked in a dispute over hundreds of millions of dollars.

It was the latest development in an increasingly acrimonious clash over the site’s future. Weeks ago, another group of family members accused the foundation of allowing costs to spiral out of control, and it said that public money shouldn’t be used to rescue the project.

But Wednesday’s letter laid the blame on the Port Authority, saying the agency “is seeking to use the public’s heartfelt support of the 9/11 memorial and museum as an easy source of revenue to help pay for its own oversized, under-budgeted, poorly-managed capital projects.”

Earlier this month, Christie and Cuomo asked the U.S. National Parks Service to step in at the site to offer financial support and “ensure long term stability.” Days earlier, the chairmen of both the foundation and the Port Authority had said they were close to an agreement, but the deal never materialized.

Spokesmen for both governors and the Port Authority didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

{The Associated Press/ Newscenter}