Washington - With a number of serious New Jersey air travel issues swirling, Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) will meet with the Acting Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, Robert Sturgell, tomorrow in the Senator's office. Senator Menendez has been particularly outspoken and engaged with the FAA on its approach to addressing endless flight delays, its airspace redesign plan that will likely increase noise for New Jersey residents without significantly reducing delays, and safety concerns at Newark Liberty International Airport, including a spike in low-fuel landings and near misses on the runways.

"New Jerseyans know better than just about anybody that air travel these days can be a frustrating - even harrowing - experience, and the way the FAA has approached dealing with the problems has been equally frustrating," said Senator Menendez. "I'm looking for answers from the person in charge, and I will also convey to him the serious concerns that I hear every day from New Jersey residents and communities. Certainly, I will also weigh his answers carefully as his nomination to become the permanent Administrator comes before the Senate.

"Following up on my letter from last week, I want to make sure that acting-Administrator Sturgell fully understands my concern that the FAA has not taken a regional approach to reducing delays, as is evidenced by the imminent announcement of flight caps only at JFK. I will also express to him that his agency's rush to implementation of the airspace redesign for both Northern and Southern New Jersey completely disregards the opinions of the people who will be affected most, the people of my state. There are also some serious safety concerns that have cropped up at Newark, including low-fuel landings and runway near misses. Those are perhaps a direct result of the overcrowded airspace, and I want acting-Administrator Sturgell to know that I expect the FAA to be proactive in ensuring passenger safety above everything else."

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