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NJ police get temporary OK to patrol ferries in NY

Gov. David Paterson (Oct. 22, 2009)

Gov. David Paterson (Oct. 22, 2009) Credit: Newsday File / James Carbone

ALBANY - New Jersey police were given temporary authority to patrol commuter ferries in New York waters for New Year's Eve under an executive order issued yesterday by Gov. David A. Paterson.

Police from the Garden State will be able to enforce laws on the ferries until tomorrow.

The move doesn't impact ferries linking Long Island with Connecticut, a Paterson spokeswoman said.

Following the terrorist incident aboard a Northwest Airlines flight last week, Paterson directed the National Guard to patrol busy airports such as LaGuardia and Kennedy during the holiday season.

The Guard was also deployed at bus and train stations yesterday.

Paterson said yesterday, "This decision should not raise concerns, but rather demonstrate that we are working at all levels of government to ensure the safety of New Yorkers."

In the past, New York has granted similar authority to New Jersey law enforcement for periods of heightened security.

Separately, Paterson endorsed full-body screening at airports to prevent terrorism. "It's the only way to guarantee that an airplane with 300 passengers will reach its destination," he told WOR radio in Manhattan.

"Unfortunately, whether we have a problem with it or not, we're going to have to recognize that's the new culture we're living in. It's disturbing."

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