By Josh Margolin New York Post
Officials at the Port Authority, which controls the 16-acre World Trade Center site, are planning to tear up a 4-year-old deal to allow the NYPD to run security at Ground Zero, The Post has learned.
The stunning about-face was hinted at last week during a political event when New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie accepted the endorsement of the PA’s police union.
The governor proclaimed, “Never — not ever on my watch — will there be any other police force who will patrol the new World Trade Center other than the Port Authority police.”
Top officials at the bi-state agency, controlled jointly by Christie and Gov. Cuomo, have researched the security agreement signed Aug. 12, 2008, and decided they can back out of the deal because the PA and NYPD have yet to conclude a required Campus Security Plan, a precise day-to-day operational guideline for the two sets of cops.
Spokesmen for Christie and Cuomo declined to comment.
But the plan to renege on what would create the biggest NYPD precinct in the city was confirmed by people close to both governors — who share a dislike for Mayor Bloomberg and NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly.
PA spokesman Steve Coleman issued a statement acknowledging that the PA-NYPD agreement remains unfinished and officials “are actively working on” it.
Kelly spokesman Paul Browne warned that the authority cannot back out now. “There are agreements in place between the city and the Port Authority that define the policing powers and responsibilities,” Browne insisted.
One PA source noted: “It’s going to be a great fight.”
To the PA’s police union, it’s a fight for jobs because it will require hundreds of cops per shift to secure the massive WTC complex.