By: Brendan Scott
ALBANY – A state Senate panel yesterday called for an overhaul of the Governors Island Preservation and Education Corp. after the state agency sank nearly $1 million into a dilapidated ferry that it later sold on eBay – for just $23,600.
The Senate Investigations Committee found in a monthslong probe that GIPEC officials purchased the 59-year-old Islander in 2007 without notifying their board or fully inspecting the ferry’s rusty hull.
Later studies estimated the cost of rehabbing the rat trap at $7 million, more than double the $3.2 million GIPEC had earmarked for a second boat to carry tourists to the 172-acre island.
Committee Chairman Craig Johnson (D-LI) urged the board to meet more frequently, hire a full-time marine superintendent, and discipline all employees involved in the ferry snafu.