Gov. Christie halts Amtrak payments, calls for inspection

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is halting payments to Amtrak following a second derailment at New York City’s Penn Station that is causing headaches for commuters in the nation’s busiest rail hub.

The Republican governor said in a letter to Amtrak’s chairman Wednesday that he directed New Jersey Transit to withhold funds until an independent inspection verifies Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor is in a state of good repair.

The governor also says he has asked the attorney general to consider filing a lawsuit to recover money that NJ Transit pays to use the rail line.

NJ Transit paid Amtrak $62 million last year for maintenance and upgrades.

Amtrak says it hopes to have full rail service restored by Friday as it repairs damage caused by Monday’s derailment.