State of New Jersey
Executive Order #82

Governor Christine Todd Whitman

See executive orders #90, #93, and #111 Whitman.


WHEREAS, Ellis Island, New Jersey has played a singularly important role in the history of the United States and the State of New Jersey as an immigration station to which millions of Americans and New Jersey residents can trace their roots;

WHEREAS, the historic significance of Ellis Island, New Jersey was acknowledged by the United States when the Island was designated as part of the Statute of Liberty/Ellis Island National Monument and placed under the operation supervision of the National Parks Service;

WHEREAS, the structures presently existing on the Island are a significant part of the rich history of Ellis Island, New Jersey;

WHEREAS, some of the structures on Ellis Island, including the Main Building, have been maintained and restored successfully through private and public efforts and placed to beneficial use as an immigration museum and administrative offices;

WHEREAS, the Supreme Court of the United States in an opinion dated May 26, 1998 recognized and acknowledged New Jersey's sovereignty and governmental control over a substantial portion of Ellis Island, as defined in the Court's opinion;

WHEREAS, many of the structures on the portion of Ellis Island that is within New Jersey's territory are presently in a state of disrepair and disuse;

WHEREAS, the State of New Jersey seeks to cooperate with, consult, and assist the National Parks Service in determining the most beneficial future use of the structures on Ellis Island, New Jersey and in selecting alternatives for maintaining and restoring said structures;

WHEREAS, the citizens of the State of New Jersey, as well as the citizens of the United States, would benefit from the maintenance, restoration, and beneficial use of the structures on Ellis Island, New Jersey;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, CHRISTINE TODD WHITMAN, Governor of the State of New Jersey, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and by the Statutes of this State, do hereby ORDER and DIRECT:

1. The creation of the Advisory Committee on the Preservation and Use of Ellis Island (the "Advisory Committee").

2. The Advisory Committee is charged with investigating all potential future uses of the structures on Ellis Island, New Jersey, examining available alternatives to maintain, restore, and put to beneficial use the structures on Ellis Island, New Jersey in a manner consistent with the historic significance of the Island, recommending to the Governor and the State Historic Preservation Officer a plan to maintain, restore, and put to beneficial use the structures on Ellis Island, New Jersey and cooperating with and assisting the State of New York and the City of New York, when appropriate, with respect to the maintenance, restoration, and use of the structures on the portion of Ellis Island within the State of New York.

3. The Advisory Committee shall be composed of up to 13 members, as follows:

a. The Attorney General or his designee; b. The State Treasurer or his designee; c. The State Historic Preservation Officer; d. The Secretary of State or her designee; e. The Director, Division of Taxation or his designee; f. A Senator to be appointed by the President of the Senate; g. An Assembly Member to be appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly;

h. The Mayor of Jersey City or his designee; i. A member of the New Jersey Congressional delegation; and j. No more than four members of the public to be appointed by the Governor based upon professional experience and expertise in urban planning, history, architecture and/or historic restoration.

The Governor shall designate a chair and vice-chair from among the members of the Advisory Committee. The members shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed for necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties subject to the availability of funds therefor.

4. The Advisory Committee shall organize and meet as soon as possible after the appointment of its members. The chair shall appoint a secretary who need not be a member of the Advisory Committee. Vacancies on the Advisory Committee shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment.

5. All State departments and agencies are hereby directed, to the extent not inconsistent with the law and within budget constraints, to cooperate with the Advisory Committee and to respond to requests for such information, personnel and assistance as are necessary to accomplish the purpose of this Order.

6. This Order shall take effect immediately.

GIVEN, under my hand and seal,
this 27th day of May in the Year of
Our Lord, One Thousand Nine
Hundred and Ninety-Eight, and of the
Independence of the United States,
the Two Hundred and Twenty-Second.

/s/ Christine Todd Whitman


/s/ John J. Farmer, Jr.
Chief Counsel to the Governor