Nov 16, 2004

NY Waterway "may be shutting down"

Weehawken N.J.,-based ferry company NY Waterway "may be shutting down and will inform its 308 employees this week that they may be terminated within 60 days," the Jersey Journal quotes NY Waterway VP Donald Liloia as saying.

A letter will be sent notifying employees of an "impending closing," under the provisions of the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Act.

Should NY Waterway in fact close, New Jersey municipalities have a fallback plan that would see the Hudson County Improvement Authority (HCIA) acquire the company.

The HCIA board last week approved a resolution authorizing its staff and consultants to investigate the acquisition, which it would finance it through a bond issue. Another HCIA board resolution has authorized the HCIA to begin the process of seeking approval from the state Local Finance Board for issuance of the bonds, says the Jersey Journal report.

If the HCIA goes ahead with its plan to buy the company, the three municipalities directly affected--Jersey City, Weehawken and Hoboken-- would jointly oversee ferry service between Hudson County and New York City, says the newspaper.

The Jersey Journal says that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has attended meetings with the HCIA and NY Waterway representatives. The Port Authority is engaging in "contingency planning" to ensure the continuity of NY Waterway's Hoboken ferry routes, spokesman Steve Coleman iss reported as saying.

NY Waterway has a contract with the Port Authority to run ferry routes from the Hoboken pier that the Port Authority owns to the World Financial Center and to Pier 11 on Manhattan's East Side.

We'll have more details in our next FERRIES & FAST CRAFT NEWS

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