Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett last week appointed six new commissioners to the board of the Delaware River Port Authority.
The Republican governor’s selections replace appointments of former Democratic Gov. Edward Rendell. Corbett selected himself to serve as the board’s chairman. Rendell also appointed himself chairman during his tenure, but his chief of staff, John Estey, eventually took the post.
The new commissioners are Joann Bell, head of Pugliese Associates, a Pennsylvania government affairs firm, Joanna Cruz, attorney at Kerns, Pearlstine, Onorato & Hladik LLP, Walter D’Alessio, vice chairman at commercial real estate investment firm NorthMarq Capital LLC, William Sasso, chairman at Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young LLP, and David Simon, senior vice president and general counsel at Jefferson Health System.
The bi-state authority manages four tolled bridges that connect Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
It also oversees the PATCO commuter line. The board in December delayed a 10% PATCO fare increase to July 1 from Jan. 1.
Tolls on the agency’s four bridges are set to increase by $1 on July 1. Officials late last year considered delaying that toll hike, but in the end opted to keep it in place.
The Port Authority has $1.3 billion of outstanding debt. Standard & Poor’s rates the DRPA A-minus with a stable outlook. Moody’s Investors Service rates it A3 with a negative outlook.