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McKnight, Sampson, & Chaparro Measure to Establish the “Liberty State Park Conservation, Recreation, and Community Inclusion Act” Clears Assembly Panel

(TRENTON) – What is now known as Liberty State Park was previously built as a site of the Central Railroad of New Jersey in 1889 to help manage the growing flow of immigrants from Ellis Island.  This historical Jersey City location operated until 1957 before the deteriorating railroad was turned into a national park in 1976 for the residents of Hudson County and travelers from around the country to enjoy.

To ensure this national landmark is preserved and accessible for families, Assembly Democrats Angela V. McKnight (D-Hudson), William B. Sampson IV (D-Hudson), and Annette Chaparro (D-Hudson) sponsor the “Liberty State Park Conservation, Recreation, and Community Inclusion Act”.  The measure was approved by the Assembly State and Local Government Committee on Wednesday.

The bill (A-4264) would permanently establish a 17-member Liberty State Park Design Task Force within the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) to assist with developing short-term action plans to improve public use and enjoyment of conservation and recreation areas within Liberty State Park.  Additionally, the Task Force would assist with developing a long-term master plan to improve park facilities and amenities, create new transportation and mobility services, and further preserve the park’s natural resources.

Upon committee approval of the measure, Assembly Members McKnight, Sampson, and Chaparro issued the following joint statement:  

“Liberty State Park is a piece of our State history that we must protect. 

“As one of only two places in the world from which Ellis Island and Lady Liberty can be accessed, Liberty State Park must continue to be preserved and enriched as a national treasure for the enjoyment of generations to come.

“This bill would allow us to better preserve the natural, historic, cultural, recreational, and scenic gifts this historical location has to offer. The Park offers an abundance of beautiful views and free, recreational areas for everyone to enjoy. Families love making memories in Liberty State Park. We must plan for its future is in place to ensure it’s around for the next generation.”