We have found through experience that it doesn’t take much to start an issue with an airport. Santa Monica it seems has taken this type activity to a new high. Unfortunately, the citizens of Santa Monica aren’t told the entire story.
Here is the CalPilots response to the latest protest which was covered in the Santa Monica Daily Press. We’re not sure our response will be posted so we are posting it here.
Los Angeles City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl has either a poor memory, or is truly uninformed when it comes to the state’s airports.
The truth is that 72% of state aviation taxes collected as a result of airports go back to the local municipality and its schools (check it out on the Division of Aeronautics (DoA) website).
The amounts of these taxes are not insignificant either – they include: aircraft fuel, tie down spaces, hangars, sales tax, and annual aircraft registration (taxed at the same rate as your home) – 72% go back to the municipality.
Further, our state airports are not simply parking spots for aircraft or training bases. They are transportation infrastructure no different than our highways and generate millions in business revenue for the local economy, as well as providing emergency services, not to mention all of the local jobs.
The DoA has provided written and documented guidelines for development around airports for years, which unfortunately, have been all but ignored by politicians and local officials throughout much of the state. When that happens, you get an unfortunate situation like Santa Monica.
If you are looking for someone to blame for the encroachment of Santa Monica Airport I suggest you start asking pointed questions of the local politicians and government officials.
Start off by asking each one “why didn’t you adhere to the published airport land development guidelines which would have protected the community?” Then also ask yourself, who will personally benefit from the closing of Santa Monica Airport?
Is it possible that underneath all the crazed supposed environmental movement regarding the airport that there is a bigger movement based on development profits? You be the judge.
President – California Pilots Association