TRENTON – The Senate today approved (36-0) a bill sponsored by Senator Paul A. Sarlo to help the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey purchase Stewart Airport in Newburgh, N.Y.
“This bill will help ease the air traffic congestion over the entire metropolitan region,” said Senator Sarlo, D-Bergen, Passaic and Essex.
The measure, S-25, co-sponsored by Senate President Richard J. Codey, now goes to the Assembly.
Its enactment in New Jersey is essential to the Port Authority’s plan to convert the former Air Force base to a larger commercial entity capable of attacting air traffic now clogging the skies over North Jersey and Manhattan and Long Island.
“Once they fix up Stewart, it will attract a lot of air traffic that now goes to Teterboro and Newark (Liberty International) Airport,” Senator Sarlo said.
The legislation is needed because the Port Authority’s range of operations is limited to a 25-mile radius from the Statue of Liberty and Stewart is an estimated 60 miles north.
“The idea is to avoid gridlock and cut down on the noise,” Senator Sarlo said.
New York already has passed similar legislation as required by the Port Authority’s bi-state compact.