The city of Santa Monica, Calif., has filed a complaint against the FAA that might finally decide the issue of who has control of its beleaguered airport and also set precedents in legal disputes about airport ownership and control throughout the U.S.
The city of Santa Monica, Calif., has filed a complaint against the FAA that will force resolution of the issue of who controls the airport. The complaint, filed on Thursday in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, seeks “to establish the City’s right to control future use of the Santa Monica Airport property.”
Three anti-airport groups in Southern California have formed a new organization–Airport2Park–that seeks to turn part or all of Santa Monica Airport into a large park. Formed by the Community Against Santa Monica Airport Traffic, Concerned Residents Against Airport Pollution and Sunset Park Anti-Airport, Airport2Park held a “community vision workshop” last week to promote its agenda. More than 150 people attended, including local anti-airport politicians Ted Lieu, a California state senator, and Los Angeles city council member Mike Bonin.
Bob Trimborn, director of Santa Monica Airport in Southern California, retired on July 1 and has joined airport operations company American Airports, which is headquartered in Santa Monica, as director of business development. “Bob’s lasting legacy will be his impassioned advocacy, which made a real difference in the lives of airport neighbors and users,” said representative Henry Waxman (D-Calif.). “He worked tirelessly with elected officials, the commissioners and the surrounding community to promote transparency and seek solutions to the challenges facing the airport.”
On July 1, 2015, Santa Monica Airport in southern California may be a completely different airfield, if the city of Santa Monica has its way. On that date, the city wants to end all fuel sales, not renew any aviation-related leases and cut 2,000 feet from the airport’s 4,973-foot runway.
After more than three hours listening to nearly 100 comments from local residents and aviation advocates, members of the Santa Monica city council voted Tuesday night to adopt a resolution that will apply landing fees to all aircraft flying into Santa Monica Airport in Southern California, as well as more than double the fee for aircraft previously subject to the charge.
The general aviation industry in the U.S. lost a key battle last night when the Santa Monica city council voted to impose higher landing fees, not just on transient aircraft but on all aircraft that use the airport. Starting August 1, even a Cessna 172 based at Santa Monica Airport (SMO) flown by a local student or rental pilot will be assessed $10.96 for each landing.
The Santa Monica Airport Commission has proposed limiting the number of flights at Santa Monica Airport to 53 percent of prior year daily operations. The commission didn’t provide any details about exactly how such a limit would be enacted. For example, would the tower turn away any aircraft over the limit?
There’s a new way to fix long-standing noise and emissions problems at airports that are surrounded by nearby neighbors, such as Naples Airport in Florida and Santa Monica Airport in Southern California.