How much did Chris Christie’s trip to cheer Dallas Cowboys cost NJ taxpayers? OPRA request: filed.

American Bridge has just asked Gov. Christie’s office to produce information about his Texas trip yesterday, where he cheered the Dallas Cowboys in owner Jerry Jones’ private box (where he did this). They’re seeking, among other things, travel records and expense logs for his air and ground travel, state police and trooper usage, private security expenses for Christie and any member of his family with him.

Read the full letter that just landed in Gov. Christie’s office on the jump page.

In this morning’s News Roundup, we highlighted an APP piece by Bob Jordan about Gov. Christie’s failure to account to New Jersey taxpayers how large a bill we’re all footing for his out of state travel, conducted not on NJ business but for his own political gain:

Christie in his political career and while he was U.S. attorney for New Jersey has been known as a big spender but secretive about how much public money is used for his travel.

Christie strayed outside New Jersey frequently over the past year on Republican Governors Association-funded political trips but there’s been no full accounting of costs incurred by New Jersey taxpayers on those trips. Christie has upcoming political trips to Florida, Massachusetts, South Carolina, Ohio, Maryland, Iowa and Illinois.

It falls to news organizations or ordinary citizens to spend time trying to get Christie’s front office to cough up that info. Those requests, via Open Public Records Act (OPRA) are frequently met with delay or incomplete response.  Read the full OPRA request – below.

Monday, January 05, 2015

Attn: OPRA Officer

New Jersey Office of the Governor

PO Box 001

Trenton, NJ 08625

Phone: 609-292-6000

Fax 1: 609-292-3454

Fax 2: 609-984-6886

To Whom It May Concern,

It is known from press coverage that Governor Chris Christie, who has spent much of his time over the last year outside of New Jersey, was in Texas on Sunday, January 4.

The following request is being made in accordance with the New Jersey Open Public Records Act (N.J.S.A. 47:1A-1 et seq.) and all other New Jersey open record laws. I am requesting copies of the following records:

Travel Logs/Itineraries: Copies of all travel logs and itineraries of Governor Chris Christie from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015. Records should detail the date and time of travel, the destination, the purpose of travel and meeting, and whom Christie met as available.

Outlook Calendar: Copies of all outlook calendars of Governor Chris Christie from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015.

Scheduling Documents: I am requesting copies of all scheduling documents (including emails) of Governor Chris Christie’s secretary/scheduler regarding meetings from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015.

State Vehicle Expenses and Logs: Copies of all travel expenses, travel reimbursements, and travel logs related to Governor Chris Christie’s (or a member of his family’s) usage of any state-owned vehicle from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015.  Travel logs should detail the date and time of usage, the destination, the number and identity of the occupants, the model of the vehicle, and the estimated distanced traveled as available.

State Plane/Helicopter Expenses and Logs: Copies of all expenses, reimbursements, and travel logs related to Governor Chris Christie’s (or a member of his family’s) usage of any state-owned plane or helicopter from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015.  Travel logs should detail the date and time of usage, the destination, the number and identity of the occupants, the model of the plane, and the estimated distanced traveled as available.

State Police and Trooper Usage Records: Copies of records that detail all state police and trooper units assigned to accompany Governor Chris Christie when he is outside of his state office from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015.  These records should detail the number of officers assigned, the date when they were assigned to Christie, the hours of security protection provided to Christie, and the estimated cost of such services being provided.

Private Security Expenses & Reimbursements: Copies of all expenses related to any private security services provided to Governor Chris Christie outside of his state office from January 3, 2015, to January 5, 2015.  Please also include all related reimbursement requests submitted by Christie (or his staff) for such security services being provided.

I realize that certain costs may be applicable to this request.  Please contact me when you can provide a payment amount for my requests.  In the meantime, I authorize an initial expense cap of $500 to be accrued. To help assess my status for copying and mailing fees, please note that I am gathering information for research purposes and not for commercial activities.

I also request that you state the specific legal and factual grounds for withholding any documents or portions of documents, should you withhold any. Please identify each document that falls within the scope of this request but is withheld from release.

If requested documents are located in, or originated in, another installation or bureau, I would request that you please refer this request, or any relevant portion of this request, to the appropriated installation or bureau.

To the extent that the information is available in electronic format, I would prefer to receive that information via email or CD, particularly if providing the information reduces the time or expense involved. Otherwise, I request to receive the information in paper form.

You may fax your response to 202-315-0384 or email it to FOIA@AmericanBridge.org. If you wish to call 202-684-7154, please do so between 9AM and 6PM (EST).

Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Brad Woodhouse

American Bridge 21st Century

455 Massachusetts Avenue

Suite 280

Washington, DC 20001

Comments (4)

  1. vmars

    An old diary on Christie’s answer to a reporter asking who funded a vacation to Paris and London to see Bruce Springsteen play: http://www.bluejersey.com/diar

    Christie had a message for The Auditor: “Your readers should not be concerned about who paid for the concerts or my vacation.”

    The comments are priceless, too, with the old Christie blind hagiography running strong.

    Reply
  2. vmars

    “Governor Christie attended the game last night as a guest for Jerry Jones, who provided both the ticket and transportation at no expense to New Jersey taxpayers,” Christie spokesman Kevin Roberts told NJ.com.  

    Reply

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