Cuomo orders Port Authority to conduct noise studies

By Kelsey Durham

Gov. Andrew Cuomo Monday directed the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to complete a series of tasks intended to address concerns from residents about the recent increase in airplane noise in the New York City area.

In response to a growing number of complaints from homeowners, including many in Queens, Cuomo ordered the agency to double the number of noise monitors currently in place and more closely track any aircraft that violate the decibel limit so necessary fines can be enforced. He also directed the Port Authority to begin carrying out a Part 150 noise study that he approved last November as a way to carefully look at how noise from nearby airports affects those living around them.

Cuomo also urged the Port Authority and the Federal Aviation Administration to work together with concerned residents as decisions are made that will affect their communities in the future.

“Airport noise is rightly an important concern for residents of Queens, the Bronx and Nassau County and that is why I am directing the Port Authority to open a full and thorough dialogue with the impacted communities while also pursuing a noise study to better address the issue,” Cuomo said. “We will listen to local residents and ensure their input is used to make both JFK and LaGuardia airports better neighbors.”

Residents in Queens, including some who have formed a group known as Queens Quiet Skies, have pushed for community involvement in a roundtable that would facilitate formal discussions and negotiations between the FAA and homeowners who say they are burdened by airplane noise in their neighborhoods. Cuomo’s directive requires the Port Authority to begin taking part in such meetings as early as April.

Officials from the Port Authority said they are committed to taking whatever steps are needed to address the concerns of those living around the city’s major airports.

“The Port Authority understands it must strive to be a good neighbor in the communities where its airports are located,” Port Authority Aviation Director Thomas Bosco said “We will seek noise mitigation with the FAA where feasible.”

Reach reporter Kelsey Durham at 718-260-4573 or by e-mail at [email protected].

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