New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Saturday urged the federal government to shoulder the long-term burden of operating the Sept. 11 Memorial and Museum, including funding and assistance with managing the site.
In a letter to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, the governors stressed the "national and international significance" of the destruction of the World Trade Center towers, and asked that the National Park Service take on a "greater role" in funding and managing the memorial.
The park service is the federal agency that operates the nation's system of parks, including battlefields and other sites of historic importance.
The letter from Cuomo and Christie supports a legislative effort by Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, who had previously sought to have the park service take over operation of the memorial.
"Like so many other historic sites where tragedy struck, the National Park Service would bring the resources and experience to ensure long-term stability for the memorial and museum, while preserving the site's rightful place in our national history," the governors said in a written statement.
The governors' letter cites an example of an institution run by a private foundation with assistance from the park service: the National Holocaust Museum in Washington.