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Officials Say New ATC Facility Would Save, Create Jobs

Town, county and state representatives gather at MacArthur Airport to encourage FAA to choose the airport for its NextGen air traffic control center.

With the Federal Aviation Administration looking to consolidate its air traffic control facilities in the region, officials from across Suffolk gathered at Long Island MacArthur Airport (LIMA) on Thursday to encourage the FAA to house its new center at the airport in Ronkonkoma.

The FAA is looking to bring its air traffic control operations, currently located in Ronkonoma and Westbury, under one roof.

In addition to Long Island, published reports have indicated the FAA is also looking at locations in Poughkeepsie and Albany.

During a press conference at the airport, Islip Town Supervisor Tom Croci said locating the NextGen air traffic control facility at MacArthur would keep current high-paying air traffic control jobs in the County, and also create new construction jobs in the region.

“The FAA is already a member of our community,” Croci said. “Their employees live and shop in our Town; their children go to our schools. The airport is a natural fit for the future of the FAA.”

Although no economic impact study has been done to calculate the effect of losing the 524 positions at the current Ronkonkoma air traffic control facility, Croci said those jobs leaving Long Island would be devastating.

“It would have a tremendous impact on the local economy,” he said. “But on the opposite side having the new facility here would add another 500 high-paying jobs, and that would be a real spark locally.”

In addition to bringing more air traffic control jobs to Suffolk, officials also noted construction of the new facility would create more than 1,000 construction jobs, and also present a new opportunity for Long Island’s aerospace and technology firms to expand and grow.

While job preservation and creation was a main theme touched on by nearly all of the town, county and state officials who spoke during the press conference, Islip’s supervisor further noted MacArthur Airport currently surpasses FAA site requirements for a new air traffic control facility.

Islip Town officials said the airport’s location is within the 150-mile radius FAA requirement for the new facility, and MacArthur also meets the need to have access to power and fiber optic lines.

Furthermore, the location of the new structure must also meet FAA acreage requirements, which the airport surpasses since more than 80 acres are available.

Croci said the FAA is expected to make a decision on where to place the consolidated air traffic control facility within the year.

Ranger Sewer July 13, 2012 at 01:57 PM
Let me be BLUNT here: Do you think ANYBODY Town, county and state representatives give a dam about the TAXPAYER? They know that ALL TAXES ARE COLLECTED AT THE POINT OF A GUN, So why should they give a dam about a TAXPAYER? THEY KNOW HIGH TAXES ENSLAVE African Americans and with high taxes and NO EXCUSE for them, I feel that making slaves is what they want to do, to control certin members of the population. THIS IS SAD, SLAVERY WAS ABOLISHED. mlk WOULD BE TURNING OVER IN HIS GRAVE. mAY god bless him. We need a FEW GOOD MEN LIKE HIM TODAY AND IN OFFICE.
pbug56 July 13, 2012 at 09:51 PM
We need something related to aviation at Islip - it's pretty clear that there will be less and less airline traffic there, and that what there is will always be of poor quality and very high price.
Ralebird July 14, 2012 at 04:28 AM
If you took a poll of the workers there today I think you'd be lucky to find 20% who would want to move to Pennsylvania. Many would rather retire, aggravating the already short-staffing problem. Air traffic controllers aren't made overnight.
pbug56 July 14, 2012 at 07:46 AM
PA in some ways is in worse shape then NY. My hometown, Scranton, is completely out of money to pay its workers (at rates far lower then Long Island). And the state is trying to disqualify any elderly or minority voters it can to in a top officials words, give the state to Romney. Roads are in at least as bad shape as here, appears to be just as much corruption - if not more. And I like the state. Of course, PA doesn't have LIPAsuction.
Ranger Sewer July 14, 2012 at 12:08 PM
Pbug56: How are they "And the state is trying to disqualify any elderly or minority voters it can to in a top officials words, give the state to Romney." ? We opened up a shop in the Poconos. Rent for a 2 story 5 car garage with central a/c and heat with a Huge office area is 750 a month. My last electric bill for the month was 40 $. We keep alot of lights on and refrig, and the Security system and we can and control the heat and A/C remotely and right now the A/C is on. Taxes on this piece of property as per my landlord is 1500 NOT A MONTH but a YEAR. Gas I just paid 3.00 per gallon, Food prices are lower, Taxes Lower, I have not come across a bridge that cost me 28.00 $ to cross like the VNB. ROADS are much better then Long Island. How many TOLLS within the state have you come across lone we have to deal with here in NY ? We have been watching Scranton for a long time and was on our list of places to open up shop in and because of their out of control spending, we just stayed away. I forgot, what got me to look outside of New York and was the LAST STRAW was the MTA Tax. My trucks do not take a train so why should I have to pay for somebody else to take it? With that MTA Tax, we where just DONE with New York, and Many small business owners like me have left NY or opened up elsewhere . Either way, PA is in much better shape then NY.

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