SMO in the News – February 2015

The following articles relating to SMO have appeared in the press during February 2015:

New fuels on horizon will help clear the air at SMO (SM Daily Press, Feb 28, 2015)
Anti-Airport Activists Footed With $31,525 Anti-SLAPP Legal Bill (SM Mirror, Feb 27, 2015)
Santa Monica Airport Lease Debate Fuels Up For A Fight (SM Mirror, Feb 27, 2015)
Letter: Airport rent hikes shouldn’t fly (Santa Monica Daily Press, Feb 27, 2015)
Santa Monica Plans for SMO Put Pilots at Risk (Flying Magazine, Feb 26, 2015)
Santa Monica Airport2Park Foundation Formed (Santa Monica Dispatch, Feb 26, 2015)
New Foundation Aims to Bring a Park to SMO Property (SM Lookout, Feb 25, 2015)
SMO Lease Rates Would Skyrocket Under Commission Plan (AIN on-line, Feb 25, 2015)
NBAA Renounces Latest Effort to Curtail SMO Access (NBAA, Feb 25, 2014)
Commission seeks market rates for SMO leases (Santa Monica Daily Press, Feb 25, 2014)
Santa Monica Airport2Park Foundation Formed (, Feb 24, 2015)
Big Money Spent on Santa Monica’s November Ballot Measures (SM Lookout, Feb 4, 2015)

4 thoughts on “SMO in the News – February 2015

  1. alan katz

    So.. What is going to happen with the airport after their lease runs out in June? Are jets going to be no more ? Is the airport going to be no more ? There was a lot of talk before the election, but now that we won it seems pretty silent. What is the current state of affairs ? Will jets be allowed to land and take off while the opposition takes the election to court ? Just curious. Great job by all who got the win in November. Just hope the will of the people gets enforced Thanks,
    Alan Katz

    1. John Post author

      Alan – it is highly doubtful that the airport will close completely on July 1, or for some time to come. What is virtually certain, is that all subsidizing of aviation activity by the City will end on that date. That means full market rate rents, and that will be a new experience for aviation businesses at SMO. What else may happen on that date is still to be determined, but rest assured many of us have expressed opinions. Now we must wait and work towards those goals. We will not see what the City Council decides to do and when until late March. However, I am confident that following the election victory, the future direction of things at the airport is now permanently aligned with what the community wants even if some of the timeframes may be longer than we might wish. I doubt there is any plan by the opposition to take the election to court, that would be futile, nonetheless, this fight is far from over, but we will not rest until it is.

      1. Paul Pitkoff

        Dear Alan: The biggest disservice done by advocates of closing the airport and the city council is to be less then honest given the history of litigation and the current airport status as well as the ramifications of continual losses in Federal Court .To date the city has lost. The last loss, last year, was a big one. The city tried and failed to have the 1948 deed restrictions removed. Right now the city is in the process of appealing that decision. I think, given how the judge ruled, a reversal is problematic. In brief the Judge ruled that the city is too late to legally question the Federal Govts. claim of an interest in the property and the terms of the 1948 agreement state that the city must operate an airport and promote the use of the property as an airport in perpetuity. What will happen? If the city attempts to curtail airport operations the FAA will reclaim the airport as Federal property. If the city tries to reduce subsidies they may well be in breech of agreement as local community groups now using the property would also have to pay more or be put off the property as they have no relation to supporting aircraft operations. So I will tell you that the city gives one line for local political consumption while acting in a realistic manner knowing the consequences of taking actions that breech the 1948 transfer agreement. I predict absolutely no change in airport operations will take place in June of this year. No reduction is subsidies will occur. The city will continue to burn through taxpayer money (to date over $1M) litigating this matter. In the end, if the city does not back away, the FAA will give notice that they are filing court papers to have the airport deed revert to the Federal govt. If interested I will e-mail a copy of the last court decision. Reading it through you will understand that the matter isn’t as simply resolved as those advocates tell you. It is more likely then not that the Feds will win. Not the residents of Santa Monica. This is the reality that no amount of zealous hype can change.

        1. John Post author

          Paul: Needless to say I disagree with your conclusions. Aviation at SMO is on the way out, it is already in steep decline, and this will accelerate rapidly come July, that outcome is now almost certain. The only thing in question after the last election and the massive defeat of the aviation lobby’s desperate gambit to forestall the inevitable, is how long it will take to wind down completely. What say we review your predictions July 1:

          “I predict absolutely no change in airport operations will take place in June of this year. No reduction is subsidies will occur.”

          I think you’ll be disappointed if you really believe that.