Governor-elect Chris Christie yesterday announced his nomination of Andrew Eristoff, a former finance commissioner for New York and New York City, to serve as New Jersey’s next treasury secretary.
Eristoff was commissioner of New York’s Department of Taxation and Finance from 2003 through 2006 under Gov. George Pataki. He also served as commissioner of the New York City Department of Finance from 1999 through 2001 under Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.
Since 2006 he has worked as a consultant in tax administration and is a private investor. Prior to his terms as commissioner, the Republican Eristoff served on the New York City Council from 1993 through 1999.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Princeton University and a law degree from Georgetown University.
His nomination is subject to confirmation by the state Senate Judiciary Committee.
Eristoff contributed $250 in October to the Republican Christie’s gubernatorial campaign, according to the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission database. Christie defeated Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine in the November general election, campaigning on a platform of less government spending and lower taxes.
The incoming governor said he would create, through executive order, a new Council of Economic Advisers to continue the fiscal and budget work of his transition team. The council will create a blueprint for budget and tax policies and craft strategies to close an estimated $8 billion to $10 billion deficit for fiscal 2011 and revenue shortfalls in the current fiscal 2010 budget. Fiscal 2011 begins July 1.
“There can be no question that our state’s fiscal health is my first priority,” Christie said in a prepared statement. “We have already begun the work necessary to put together a realistic budget and address our skyrocketing deficit. This team of highly qualified fiscal experts is exactly the kind of leadership we need to enact meaningful fiscal and tax policy that will improve our economy and provide relief to struggling New Jersey families.”
Robert Grady, a member of Christie’s transition team and partner in charge of venture capital investing at the Carlyle Group, a private-equity firm, will head the council. He served as executive associate director of the Office of Management and Budget in President George H.W. Bush’s administration.
Grady in October contributed $3,400 to Christie’s campaign, according to the election commission’s database.
Christie will take office on Jan. 19 and will deliver his fiscal 2011 budget address on March 16. That proposal will need to include cost analysis of tax exemptions and tax breaks after Corzine Tuesday signed a tax-expenditure report initiative into law.
In addition, Christie yesterday announced his appointment of Alfred Koeppe as chairman of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. Koeppe is chief executive officer of the Newark Alliance, a nonprofit that works to improve Newark’s economy and public school system and includes leaders from area corporations, colleges and universities, and other nonprofit agencies. From 2000 to 2003, Koeppe was president and chief operating officer at Public Service Electric and Gas Co., New Jersey’s largest utility company.
In other announcements this week, Christie Wednesday nominated Bret Schundler as commissioner of the Department of Education. Schundler was mayor of Jersey City in the 1990s and is the chief operating officer at King’s College in Manhattan. His nomination is also subject to Senate confirmation.