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Aug 6, 2014 10:50 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Noyac Civil Council To Hold Meeting Addressing Helicopter Noise In Southampton Town

Aug 6, 2014 11:01 AM

Southampton Town residents are still angry about helicopter noise in the northern part of the town, and they continue to have the support of U.S. Representative Tim Bishop, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer and other local officials.

Mr. Bishop will attend a Noyac Civic Council meeting on Tuesday, August 12, to discuss potential forms of relief for Noyac, North Haven, Sag Harbor and other parts of the town that are in the flight paths of helicopters flying into and out of the East Hampton Airport. Representatives from Mr. Schumer’s office, as well as Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst and Town Councilwoman Christine Scalera, are also expected to attend.

The meeting is set for 7:30 p.m. at the Bridgehampton Senior Center on the Bridgehampton-Sag Harbor Turnpike.

Bob Malafronte, chairman of the Sag Harbor Citizens Advisory Committee, said that more than 5,000 noise complaints have been submitted to the airport since Memorial Day weekend. Residents of not only Southampton Town, but Shelter Island and Southold towns as well, will be working with Mr. Bishop to discuss restrictions of flight paths, or other measures.

One remedy supported by many is to move the current path out toward Plum Island, so that helicopters do not fly over the North Fork and the northern part of the South Fork. As recently as June, the Federal Aviation Administration, which dictates flight paths, renewed a helicopter route that requires all pilots to fly around Orient Point and Shelter Island, something lawmakers urged as a way to provide some solace for residents. But Mr. Malafronte said they can still hear noise.

“For people west of East Hampton, we’re looking for any relief we can get,” he said.

The battle of residents versus helicopter noise has been a long one. For years, residents all over the East End have been fighting to mitigate noise, and their efforts even churned up the creation of an East Hampton committee in 2011. East Hampton Town over the years has also attempted to enforce airport noise mitigation plans.

Last summer, a federal court decision denied a commercial helicopter trade group’s effort to overturn a rule requiring all pilots to fly one mile north of the North Shore.

Mr. Malafronte urged all residents who are concerned about helicopter noise to attend Tuesday night’s meeting. “We really need to come together and make sure we have voices,” he said.

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