Murphy picks three for new Gateway commission

GDC The Portal Bridge replacement project is part of the so-called Gateway Tunnel project.

Gov. Phil Murphy announced New Jersey’s three representatives on the Gateway Development Commission, which will now have a full complement of commissioners, including three members from New York and one from Amtrak.

Murphy has nominated Janine G. Bauer and Balpreet Grewal Virk, who will — pending confirmation from the state Senate — serve alongside Jerry Zaro, the current chairman of the Gateway Program Development Corp.

“By signing legislation creating the Gateway Development Commission and nominating commissioners from both New Jersey and New York, Gov. (Andrew) Cuomo and I are renewing our commitment to moving the Hudson tunnel project forward,” Murphy said in a prepared statement. “The commissioners we have chosen today represent a group of talented individuals of the highest integrity and professionalism who will provide meaningful oversight and accountability over this project of national importance.”

Bauer is a partner at the Lawrenceville-based law firm of Szaferman Lakind, while Virk is director of community engagement in the Department of Population Health at Hackensack Meridian Health.

Zaro, who has served as a trustee of the Gateway Program Development Corp. since 2018, is a member at Newark-based law firm Sills Cummis & Gross.

“We welcome and congratulate the new Gateway commissioners who will form the founding board of the bistate Gateway Development Commission,” Gateway Program Development Corp. interim Executive Director Frank Sacr said in a statement. “They are seasoned transportation, advocacy and government professionals who will be tremendously helpful in finally replacing a more-than-century-old system with 21st century rail transportation linking New York and New Jersey.”

Cuomo appointed New York Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez, Thruway Authority Project Director Jamey Barbas and former Secretary to the Governor Steven M. Cohen.

Amtrak’s representative is Tony Coscia, its board chair and a partner with the New Jersey law firm Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf LLP.