Jersey Contractors Affected by Trust Fund Shutdown May Seek Millions to Cover Losses

January 23, 2017

New Jersey contractors who were ordered to stop work while Governor Christie and the state's legislature struggled to find a mutually agreeable way to fund the Jersey Transportation Trust Fund last July are asking to be compensated for their losses.

$3.5 billion worth of "nonessential" road and rail projects state-funded transportation projects were shut down by Christie last summer, idling more than 3,000 workers. The construction projects were held back and not allowed to resume until after the governor signed a compromise bill in mid-October.

According to, usually timelines are written into project contracts that allow either party to be reimbursed for costs due to delays. Contractors have the right to file delay claims against the municipality or county to attempt to recover costs associated with shutting down the project, moving equipment and materials from the site, then remobilizing the site when the resumes.

In this case, five counties have reported contractors have notified them that delay claims from the trust fund shutdown could run up to $9.1 million - a number that may increase as more counties and municipalities report in.

The New Jersey Department of Transportation said it will consider providing funds to help cover the delay claims. So far, no claims have been formally filed and NJDOT spokesperson Steven Schapiro said those claims that are filed will be considered on a project-by-project basis.