Gov. agrees to turn over docs

The escalating feud over documents related to the state’s Race to the Top applicaiton may be over.

Senate President Steve Sweeney, (D-West Deptford) said Monday that Gov. Chris Christie has agreed to run over the documents sought by Sen. Barbara Buono, if the senate calls off its impending vote to give the Legislative Oversight Committee subpoena powers.

“Earlier today, the Governor called me to his office and agreed to release the documents Majority Leader Buono has sought if the Senate would postpone its vote on granting the Legislative Oversight Committee subpoena powers.

 “The Governor agreed to release the materials by Wednesday. I have agreed to the Governor’s request.”

 The senate is scheduled to vote this afternoon over the proposal to grant the committee subpoena powers.  Buono annoucned she would seek the subpoena after getting what she called a “woefully inadequate response” from state Department of Education officials in response to documents and to requests to have employees testify before a senate committee she said is seeking to find out what went wrong with the state’s failed Race to the Top federal grant application.

“We have been left with no choice but to seek to use the Legislature’s subpoena power to compel the handover of vital documents and correspondence and require the attendance of key individuals,” Buono said in a release Friday.

Democratic legislators have been hammering at the issue since the federal education department rejected the state’s application for $400 million in funding.  An error on the application cost the state nealry five points and only three points separated the state from the funding.  State Education Commissioner Bret Schundler lost his job over the gaffe after Christie said the cabinet member lied over attempts to fix the error.

Gov. agrees to turn over docs