Thursday, August 14, 2008
Airport land-use bill rejected; S.B. County, some Inland lawmakers opposed it
By JIM MILLER
The Riverside (CA) Press-Enterprise
SACRAMENTO – An Inland lawmaker’s bill intended to improve safety around airports failed in the Assembly on Thursday, as Inland lawmakers divided over the measure. The measure by state Sen. Gloria Negrete McCleod, D-Chino, would require every county to create an airport land-use commission to oversee development around airports. San Bernardino County is one of several counties that do not have the such panels. Introduced in January, the bill came a week after two planes collided near Corona Municipal Airport, killing four in the crash and one on the ground.
A month later, three people died when a plane crashed onto a residential street near Riverside Municipal Airport.
“How many accidents have happened since this bill first started?” Negrete McLeod asked after the bill fell 14 votes short in the Assembly. “We’re looking out for people’s safety.”
Pilot groups backed the measure. But San Bernardino County and other opponents questioned whether countywide oversight would be an improvement over city land-use panels. San Bernardino County estimated that a countywide commission would cost $600,000.
The bill will be reconsidered in the coming days.
Assemblyman John J. Benoit, a licensed pilot, managed the bill in the Assembly and was the only Inland lawmaker to vote for it. He said county panels would take a big-picture view of land-use around airports.
But Benoit, R-Bermuda Dunes, said he sees little connection between this year’s Riverside County crashes and the bill’s provisions. Riverside County already has an airport land-use commission.
“Those are just crashes among a few that occur in and around airports,” he said.
How the Legislators voted.
MEASURE: SB 1118
AUTHOR: Negrete McLeod
TOPIC: Airports: airport land use commissions.
LOCATION: ASM. FLOOR
MOTION: SB 1118 Negrete McLeod Senate Third Reading By BENOIT
(AYES 27. NOES 25.) (FAIL)
Aghazarian Benoit Berg Blakeslee
De La Torre DeVore Dymally Evans
Furutani Gaines Hancock Hayashi
Hernandez Horton Karnette La Malfa
Leno Levine Lieber Ma
Niello Nunez Price Saldana
Villines Wolk Bass
Adams Anderson Arambula Beall
Caballero Coto Duvall Emmerson
Feuer Fuentes Fuller Garcia
Houston Huff Keene Laird
Maze Mullin Nava Parra
Silva Smyth Spitzer Tran
ABSENT, ABSTAINING, OR NOT VOTING
Berryhill Brownley Charles Calderon Carter
Cook Davis De Leon DeSaulnier
Eng Galgiani Garrick Huffman
Jeffries Jones Krekorian Lieu
Mendoza Nakanishi Plescia Portantino
Sharon Runner Ruskin Salas Solorio
Soto Strickland Swanson Torrico