But U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak, (D., Pa.) and U.S. Rep. Robert E. Andrews, (D., N.J.) said the airport - owned by the city - was required to study how noise patterns from the jets would change under the new flight patterns, before pilots started using the new paths.
"Prior to any new noise being placed upon the area around the airport, abatement procedures have to be pursued," Sestak said during a conference call early yesterday evening.
Douglas Oliver, a spokesman for Mayor Nutter, said the mayor could not respond to the issue until he reviewed it with airport officials.
Phyllis VanIstendal, a spokeswoman for the airport, said she was not familiar with the noise abatement issues raised by Sestak and Andrews and could not immediately comment.
Jim Peters, a spokesman for the FAA, declined to comment because the issue had been raised specifically with the mayor.
Sestak and Andrews have been vocal opponents of the FAA's plan to send more planes over their districts. Delaware County, along with about a dozen cities, counties and groups in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut, has filed an appeal to the FAA's plan. The communities affected by the new routes have asked that use of the routes be halted until their appeals are heard.
Sestak and Andrews said yesterday that they would consider litigation if the airport does not adhere to the noise compatibility program they contend the city is bound by.
"This is another rail on the tracks that we're trying to lay down," Sestak said.
Contact staff writer Joelle Farrell at 610-627-0352 or firstname.lastname@example.org.