AOPA yesterday filed a freedom of information request with the City of Rialto, California, challenging plans to downsize or close Art Scholl Memorial/Rialto Municipal Airport. “AOPA will take whatever steps are necessary to keep Rialto Airport open and viable in its present configuration,” said Bill Dunn, AOPA vice president of airports. “The city has a duty and a federal obligation to airport users and taxpayers, and we won’t allow Rialto to default on that obligation.” AOPA is forcing the city’s stewardship of the airport into the open. Under the California Public Records Act, AOPA’s freedom of information action means the city is now required to reveal exactly what is happening with airport funds and to produce communications with consultants and developers.
The city claims the airport is a “money pit,” but it is also in negotiations with developers. The 453 acres of airport land, some of it purchased with federal airport funds, sits right next to the planned extension of the I-210 freeway, and is considered prime property for development.