The Port Authority in New York released its $3.2 billion operating budget for 2018, which shows a $61 million, or 1.9 percent increase, over the current budget.
The largest increase in the proposed budget is to upgrade safety and security at Port Authority facilities. The $726 million set aside for this line item – up $20 million from the current year – is for the addition of new counterterrorism police posts at the airports, new officer positions, and police classes for about 270 new police officers.
Further, $1.6 billion will go towards maintaining current infrastructure operations, $392 million is earmarked for ongoing management services, while $396 million is set aside for payments to local municipalities and other landlords in return for the use of facilities or property.
Also, the budget includes about $1.1 billion to upgrade and redevelop the region’s airports — LaGuardia Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport, and JFK International Airport.
“This budget funds our operations and our key capital project priorities while maintaining fiscal discipline,” Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton said. “This proposed budget sets out a fiscally responsible plan that enables the Port Authority to maintain and operate a safe and secure transportation network while we make the critically imperative investments to upgrade and replace facilities that are far below global standards. The budget also significantly increases spending on security at all of our facilities, as well as on improving cybersecurity – both obviously necessary for the world we operate in today.”
The increase in expenses will be offset by an anticipated $127 million jump in revenues, which is 2.5 percent higher than 2017. This revenue increase comes from higher revenue from aviation facilities and more rental income at the World Trade Center and at port facilities.
In addition, Port Authority released its $3.4 billion Capital Budget for 2018, which includes repairs and upgrades to its facilities, including, bridges, airports, tunnels, and subways.
The budgets are available for public review and comment on the Port Authority website. The written comment period is open to Dec. 5. The Board of Commissioners is expected to act on the budgets at its Dec. 7 meeting.