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Governor Christie Names Marc Ferzan To Manage Hurricane Sandy Storm Recovery

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Published on Nov 28, 2012

Press Conference at State House, Trenton on November 28, 2012
(Partial Transcript Below)

Governor Christie: "With the magnitude of the rebuilding process in mind, today I'm asking Marc Ferzan to take over the responsibilities of managing the Hurricane Sandy recovery and rebuilding efforts within my office. He will be responsible for directing the vital task of overseeing and coordinating my administration's long-term recovery goals and efforts in cooperation with all federal, state, local, private, and nongovernmental partners. In addition, we are bringing onboard James Lee Witt Associates to assist in the long-term rebuilding process. As most of you know, James Lee Witt and his team have vast experience in disaster recovery and large-scale mitigation management. Mr. Witt is a special advisor to Louisiana, assisting with the nation's longest long-term recovery in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita and is the former FEMA director under President Bill Clinton. Mr. Witt will provide strategic support to the state in all facets of recovery and mitigation, resources for appropriate resolution services to assist in the state's reconstruction, and senior level consultation in all facets of the intermediate and long-term recovery process.

With Marc leading this effort, and Witt and Associates providing critical assistance, my commitment to the people of New Jersey is to make steady progress in our recovery, and to know that three or six or twelve months from now, I'll demand the same level of effort, attention, and results from government as I have in the last thirty days. Rebuilding our state is the most important and pressing challenge before us. I'm naming Marc to this position because of the importance and urgency of the effort and my commitment to getting it done efficiently and effectively for the people of our state. I know Marc well from our time working together. We have worked together on and off for the last ten years. He is a smart, proven, and capable manager, who will bring people and government together, build consensus, and effectively handle the many facets of the recovery effort moving forward. In this position, he will be housed here in the Statehouse. He will be in regular and constant contact with me and our cabinet and our outside partners at every level... The former executive attorney general for the state of New Jersey, he served more than eight years in various leadership positions with me also at the United States Attorney's Office. In addition to managing the front office of the Attorney General here in New Jersey, Marc supervised several high-profile cases, including the landmark $25 billion joint state and federal national mortgage servicing fraud settlement, New Jersey's major role in securing $150 million national Medicaid fraud settlement with Maxim Healthcare Services, and the state's legal fight to hold those responsible for polluting the lower Passaic River. He has a reputation for bringing unbounded enthusiasm to each task he undertakes. I know he'll bring the same intense energy to the task of leading the rebuilding of New Jersey. There was never a tough task to be done in the US Attorney's Office when I was there, a case that other people either couldn't seem to move or get rid of, wasting investigative resources, I turned to Marc, and if there was a case there to be made, he brought it and brought it successfully, and if there was no case there and we needed to stop wasting resources on it, he had the guts to go and kill it as well. It's that type of decision-making ability that I've seen in Marc over the years we've worked together, which make me confident in asking him to undertake this responsibility. We have a long way to go, but the people of New Jersey have already shown that we're ready to meet the challenge. In his new role, Marc's first task will be assembling a core team to guide this effort and to determine the different areas of focus that require long-term strategic planning. He'll be working with Witt and Associates on that, and I have assured him that he will have the full run of state government, to detail people from other relevant departments to be part of his team in the Statehouse here to be able to work on this day to day. Additionally, he will begin to immediately work with all of the different partners that we have in this, to bring together all the information and resources that we need since Hurricane Sandy happened, to build on and effectively execute the rebuilding efforts. Critical among his duties, Marc will be responsible for collecting an inventory of all available public and private funding sources for rebuilding and examining strategies to ensure their most effective deployment and facilitating the development and the execution of plans to move forward, ensuring the work is done in a strategic, well coordinated, and efficient manner."

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