Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver (D-Essex/Passaic) released the following statement on Monday regarding comments made by Gov. Christie regarding the Rutgers athletic program situation and the Legislature:
“The state Legislature has an obligation to the taxpayers, students, faculty, administrators, parents, alumni and other constituents to explore the process by which an unhealthy environment was allowed to exist within the Rutgers men’s basketball program. Left to its own devices in late 2012, the university hired outside legal counsel when these tapes first surfaced, and the course adopted by the university, we now know, was not the most prudent course to take.
“The Legislature is asked to approve legislation which operationalizes the functioning and funding of Rutgers, and there are no greater champions of our state university than the members of the New Jersey Legislature. To imply that the Legislature seeks to cause ‘reputational damage’ or create a ‘circus’ atmosphere is extremely disingenuous.”