THE PORT AUTHORITY OF NY & NJ

Press Release Article


PORT AUTHORITY TO FAA: NO TO HEAVIER PLANES AT TETERBORO

Date: Aug 19, 2003
Press Release Number: 111-2003

The Port Authority told the Federal Aviation Administration today that forcing Teterboro Airport to let heavy airplanes land on its runways is bad for the airport and for the community.

The Port Authority, in an effort to block the FAA’s plan, today submitted its written opposition to the federal agency as part of a public comment period to respond to the proposed policy. New Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey, who has also written the FAA opposing its plan, directed the Port Authority to fight to keep the larger planes from landing at Teterboro.

The proposed policy, if adopted, would hamper the way in which Teterboro Airport is maintained in the public interest. For more than 30 years, the Port Authority’s 100,000-pound rule has been a reliable tool in the operation of Teterboro Airport to help protect its infrastructure and support the facility’s obligation to serve as a reliever airport as designated by the FAA in the National Airport System.

The Port Authority’s comments noted that Teterboro Airport serves smaller general aviation aircraft, while Newark Liberty International, John F. Kennedy International and LaGuardia airports accommodate heavier aircraft. The Port Authority also noted that the FAA’s proposed plan would have a negative impact on the operations of Teterboro because the runways are not designed to handle heavier planes, and forcing the airport to allow these jets to land there would adversely impact the life expectancy of the runways, as well as overall airport operations.

Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, \"Following the directive of Gov. McGreevey, we are going to make it clear to the FAA that the Port Authority is going to fight as aggressively as it can to keep these larger planes off Teterboro property. The FAA’s heavy-handed proposal would negatively impact operations at Teterboro Airport, which was designed to provide service to general aviation aircraft, not enormous airplanes that the FAA would force on the airport.\"

Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, \"The Port Authority operates an airport system designed to allow heavy aircraft to use the three commercial airports within our system. This proposed policy would nullify the current operating parameters at Teterboro Airport and require major upgrades to Teterboro’s infrastructure that would not offer any benefit to the airport or the communities.\"

Port Authority Director of Aviation William R. DeCota said, \"We are concerned about the ability of Teterboro to handle planes over 100,000 pounds if the FAA forces this policy on the Port Authority and the people of this region. Our policy restricting planes weighing 100,000 pounds was created to ensure Teterboro Airport would remain a general aviation airport while heavier commercial aircraft utilized Newark Liberty and Kennedy International airports, as well as LaGuardia Airport.\"

In addition to today’s submission to the FAA, the Port Authority continues to work with federal, state and local elected officials to pursue unified opposition to the FAA’s policy. Two weeks ago, the Port Authority’s Board of Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution restating its commitment to restricting larger aircraft and directing agency staff to explore every possible way to stop the FAA. The resolution was immediately sent to the FAA, the Congressional delegations of New Jersey and New York, state and local legislators, and leaders of communities in the vicinity of Teterboro Airport.

The Port Authority has taken other measures to improve the quality of life for the residents in and around Bergen County in addition to maintaining the 100,000 pound weight limit including, investing tens of millions of dollars to soundproof nearby schools; instituting an aggressive noise-fighting program that includes a \"three-strikes-and-you’re-out\" provision to ban any airplane if it receives three noise violations; and prohibiting airlines and operators from providing scheduled service, which maintains the airport as a general aviation service.

The Port Authority’s comments to the FAA can be viewed on the agency’s website located at www.panynj.gov.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates some of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; the George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH rapid-transit system; the Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan. The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.