That's the question at the heart of today's Daily News editorial:
We don't know what [state Chief Justice Ronald] Castille was thinking when he decided to undertake a major development project with no public process, no bids, no effort to make sure the spoils didn't go to the same small group of political insiders who so often get this work. Projects of this size are typically handled by the state's division of general services, which subjects projects of this size to bids. Did no one think to point this out to Castille earlier?
The project has now been taken over by the state, and Castille is asking for invoices for $12 million in taxpayer money. Hey, that's great .... and it would have been greater if it had happened before the money got paid. Now, the paper says, we need a bit more -- perhaps an independent investigation.
The state's auditor general and/or the attorney general should launch an independent and thorough investigation to uncover where this public money went, and whether it was responsibly spent.