(TRENTON) – Assembly Education Chairman Patrick J. Diegnan Jr. (D-Middlesex) issued the following statement Wednesday on the Christie administration’s mistake that cost the state $400 million in Race to the Top education funds:

“It’s beyond ludicrous that Gov. Christie is passing the blame for New Jersey taxpayers and children missing out on vital education funding.
“The buck clearly does not stop at Gov. Christie’s desk.
“This obvious and glaring $400 million error by the governor’s own administration demands a full accounting, which is why I ask the Attorney General or the state comptroller to conduct a full investigation into how this occurred. Who filled out the application? Who signed off on it? What role did the governor play in this disastrous mistake? Why was the error not revealed for two weeks even though the administration knew all about it?
“Perhaps if the Christie administration made their error known earlier, others could have indeed picked up the ball and helped, but since they kept it secret that wasn’t even a possibility. So much for transparency and bipartisanship.
“The Christie administration must make a full and transparent accounting of how this mistake occurred and what it plans to do to prevent it in the future. This incompetence cannot stand. Anything less is simply another slap in the face to New Jersey taxpayers.”