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ALBANY - Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Wednesday continued to avoid involvement in the George Washington Bridge lane closures scandal of last fall that continues to dog New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
In December, Cuomo backed Christie, who said he knew nothing of the plan to close traffic lanes to the bridge for days. Cuomo told reporters in December: “I'm sure it is as Gov. Christie says it is."
Asked Wednesday if he still had the same trust in the Republican governor after some of Christie's aides resigned over the mess, Cuomo, a Democrat, said, “I think we should wait until the investigations are finished so we have the facts … that’s always preferable.”
Democrats in New Jersey have claimed that Christie’s aides orchestrated the massive traffic snarl in September as political payback for the Fort Lee, N.J., mayor who didn’t endorse Christie for re-election.
The bridge is operated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey under state and federal laws.
“New York is not in control of the agency,” Cuomo said Wednesday. “It’s a bi-state agency, so it is a situation of shared control and shared authority, by definition.”
Port Authority Executive Director Patrick Foye, a Cuomo appointee, has said he knew nothing of the traffic study that triggered the lane closures.
Cuomo said Wednesday that he didn’t know of the traffic problem until “it hit the papers, or the radio, when it became public. I didn’t personally get involved in it.”