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Baer Calls For Stronger Security Measures

MAYWOOD- After an incident involving airplane debris, which fell inches from a local resident, Senator Byron M. Baer urged the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to work with the federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in order to ensure stronger security measures for area airports.

“The 3 by 4 foot plane fragment that fell from a passing airplane after it took off from Teterboro Airport on Sunday brings to light the need for stronger security regulation in order to ensure the safety of the 11 million people in the New York metropolitan area,” said Senator Baer. “This event which luckily resulted in no casualties, highlights a large national concern for the safety of our smaller local airfields. In a time of heightened terror, we need to take every type of security precaution and should not allow the privatization of security measures for our airfields to jeopardize our safety.”

Teterboro is one of three airports that is monitored through a pilot program called the Transportation Security Administration Access Certificate (TSAAC), which allows corporate aircraft operators to work under a TSA approved security program. The program, a joint initiative between TSA and the National Business Aviation Association, is similar to subcontracting for security responsibilities, stated the 37th District Senator.

Senator Baer noted that currently the program is only voluntary, and that although the TSAAC provides standardized security procedures and best practices for business operators to keep track of personnel, facilities, aircraft and in-flight operations that will help extend TSA regulations, it is simply not enough.

“Privatization is a risky way to go when we are talking about the safety and security of so many lives in New Jersey, and surrounding areas,” said Senator Baer. “Port Authority involvement would better allow TSAAC-certified firms to understand and address the unique needs and concerns on a local level that the FAA and TSA departments have not yet been able to achieve.”

The Senator also said that, “although privatization of security measures at airports is the cheaper way to go, it is not the safe choice.”