A slew of Hudson County officials gathered at the Weehawken Ferry Terminal Wednesday afternoon to support a bill that will be introduced by Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-32) and State Senator Nick Sacco (D-32) that could potentially ban tourist helicopters in New Jersey once and for all.
” … I’m going to propose legislation, I wanted to announce it today, that would call on the commissioner of DOT [department of transportation] to prohibit helicopters from state-owned facilities,” Prieto said at the podium.
“And I think that’ll be something that sends a loud and clear message [of[ how important this is.”
Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer was one of several other local officials who spoke passionately about the subject.
“This is really important legislation to improve the quality of life of all New Jerseyans in northern Hoboken and I hope that it will receive unanimous support from the legislature,” she said.
Zimmer stated that if New York does not adopt similar legislation, they should keep the helicopters on “their side of the river, because we don’t want them and we can’t take it anymore.”
When answering questions from the media after the press conference concluded, Prieto and Menendez clarified that every heliport that allows helicopters to take flight is licensed by the state of New Jersey, therefore, the bill in question would potentially regulate which types of helicopters could take off or be stored in New Jersey.
Prieto further elaborated on the subject in a brief interview with Hudson County View.
Other officials on hand for the event included Freeholder Chairman E. Junior Maldonado, Hoboken Freeholder Anthony Romano, Jersey City Freeholder Gerry Balmir, West New York Commissioners Gabriel Rodriguez and Cosmo Cirillo, Hoboken Councilwoman Beth Mason, and the co-founder of advocacy group Stop the Chop New Jersey, Brian Wagner, among many others.
Officials gathered for a similar united effort in Hoboken back in October.