AOPA will be adding its support to a bill by New Jersey Assembly Republican leader Alex DeCroce that adds more protection to the state's privately owned, public-use airports. Most of the airports in New Jersey are privately owned, which means developers can offer the owners big money for the property. So Assemblyman DeCroce previously ushered into law the Purchase of Development Rights program, which allows the state to buy the right to develop airport property from the owner. That guarantees the airport will remain an airport, no matter who owns it. But there was one catch; local governments could still use their power of eminent domain to condemn the property, and then sell it to developers for other purposes. DeCroce's latest bill, if passed, would prevent that.
April 7, 2006