New York Governor Kathy Hochul has vetoed a state bill that sought to ban some tourist flights in and around New York and would have opened the door for people to more easily sue helicopter operators and their employees.
Hochul vetoed Senate Bill S7493A—known locally as the “Stop the Chop” bill— December 16.
“Certain elements of this legislation run counter to the federal scheme regulating New York’s airports and airspace. Therefore, I am constrained to veto this bill,” she said at the time.
The move was lauded by aviation advocacy groups, including the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) and the Helicopter Association International (HAI), which both had called on Hochul to reject the legislation after it passed both houses of the state’s legislature.
The bill would have done “great harm” to the general aviation industry in the state had it been signed into law, NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen said. The business aviation organization estimates that more than 43,000 jobs in the state are tied to general aviation, and that the industry accounts for more than $8.6 billion in economic output.
“The bill would have resulted in frivolous lawsuits, and it had the potential to affect future
vertical aviation flight operations as well,” James Viola, president and CEO of HAI, said in a statement. “Moreover, the law would have violated the constitutional principle of federal preemption that reserves regulation of aircraft and airspace to the federal government.”