Watchdog: Follow the Money

HUD probes New Jersey's $25M Sandy marketing campaign

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Associated Press,Watchdog,Housing and Urban Development,New Jersey,Chris Christie,Follow the Money,Hurricane Sandy

TRENTON, N.J. — Federal officials are taking a closer look at how New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's administration spent $25 million to promote the Jersey shore in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Democratic Congressman Frank Pallone Jr.'s office says the inspector general at the Department of Housing and Urban Development will audit the campaign, which featured commercials in which the Republican governor and his family appeared.

HUD's Inspector General's Office conducted a basic review of the issue at Pallone's urging last year. Pallone says the office found enough evidence to justify a full audit of federal funds.

The administration paid $4.7 million to a politically connected public relations company over another firm that had bid $2 million less. The winning bidder proposed using Christie in the ads, while the other bidder did not.

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