Watertown will get a say on a board that advises Boston’s Logan Airport about the noise and air quality related to the airport.
Along with Belmont and Arlington, Watertown will have a new regional committee that advises the MassPort Community Advisory Committee – which also overseas airports in Bedford and Worcester.
They got the seats thanks to State Sen. Will Brownsberger, who passed an amendment to the supplemental budget adding representatives from the three town with the support of several colleagues, including Watertown State Rep. Jonathan Hecht.
Although the Federal Aviation Authority has control over air traffic, MassPort controls airport operations and “the inclusion of Arlington, Belmont and Watertown on the CAC will ensure that our communities have a seat at the table,” Brownsberger’s Legislative Aide Andrew Bettinelli told The Belmontonian.
The problems started in the summer of 2013 when the FAA changed the pattern of flights from runway 33L. The planes have been lower and over towns west of Boston.
The Massport CAC was created two years ago, but Watertown, Belmont and Arlington did not make the list of communities on the board.
Local officials held a meeting in December to get input from residents frustrated by the noise from planes. Brownsberger and Hecht, along with Belmont State Rep. Dave Rogers and Arlington State Rep. Sean Garballey, changed that in April.
The Massport CAC is planning its first meeting later in the spring. It will make recommendations to the governor and legislature, hold hearings, make recommendations to the MassPort Board of Directors and appoint a member to the MassPort Board.