Restrictions on operations
The Town of East Hampton
When FAA grant assurances pertaining to the airport proprietor's rights expired at the end of 2014, the Town of East Hampton appointed several committees to identify ways to address noise caused by airport operations and to ascertain whether or not the airport could be financially sustainable without additional FAA subsidies.
An enormous body of work was undertaken, presented to the public and made available on the town site http://ehamptonny.gov/HtmlPages/Airport/AirportHome.htm
In 2015, the Town of East Hampton adopted four laws to provide meaningful noise relief, while minimizing both the impact on users and any potential diversion of traffic to other airports:
· Local Law #3 calls for a mandatory nighttime curfew, from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m.
· Local Law #4 calls for an extended curfew on noisy* aircraft, from 8 p.m. to 9 a.m.
· Local Law #5 calls for a limit on noisy aircraft to one trip – a single landing and takeoff – each week during the summer season.
· Local Law #7 refines the penalties provision and definitions and codifies the Town’s intent to evaluate the effectiveness of the restrictions.
* Noisy aircraft were defined on the attached list:
On April 29, 2015, a group representing aviation interests filed a legal action in federal court, seeking to delay the implementation of the Local Laws.
In June 2015, a judge issued a preliminary injunction against Local Law #5 (the one-trip-per-week restriction on noisy aircraft). That was the one restriction which would have provided the most relief from noise.
In June 26th, 2015, the court affirmed the right of the Town of East Hampton to regulate airport noise. Enforcement of three local laws began on July 2, 2015, at 12:01 a.m.
A group calling itself "Friends" of the East Hampton Airport, and others, have filed a total of seven lawsuits against the Town of East Hampton. Decisions are pending.
In 2015, aviation industry contributors poured over $250,000 into the coffers of candidates running for election to the East Hampton Town Board; those candidates supported aviation industry demands. It was the largest sum of contributions ever raised for a local election in East Hampton. However, the residents of the town soundly defeated the industry’s attempt to buy control of the airport and the town.
These events should be sufficient to inform Town Board Members, as well as all residents of the Town of East Hampton, that as long as JPX remains an airport, the expansion of the airport and the demands of the aviation industry will continue.
Town Hall, East Hampton, NY
One of the frequent objections raised to closing the town's airport is that there is a need for emergency services operations. Such services are usually provided by helicopters which can and do regularly land at nearby Havens Beach, for example, or at Foster Memorial (Long Beach) and other locations.
A small area at the airport could be reserved for the exclusive use of emergency services, which could include a helicopter pad, similar to that in Southampton Town.
Airports abound on Long Island. According to Wikipedia, Long Island continues to have a disproportionate number of airports in comparison to its physical size
(approx. 1,4000 square miles). Within 30 miles of KHTO, recreational pilots have a choice of two airports:
1. Montauk Airport, a small recreational airport which can be approached from the water.
2. Gabreski Airport (Westhampton).
Both those airports are closer to East Hampton than the distances many of us regularly drive to appointments in Stony Brook!