May 24, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Santa Monica Argues Jet Ban in D.C. Appeals Court:

City staff argued last week in Washington D.C. to uphold a halted-ban on faster jets at the Santa Monica Airport (SMO), which has been contested by the Federal Flight Administration. After months of preparation and years of struggle between the City and the FAA, oral arguments moved forward in front of the Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday, Oct 14.

The City has been fighting since 2007 to keep Category C and D jets off the SMO runway. The City argues that the runway is too short based on the FAA’s own standards.

Attorney Erik Pilsk of the D.C.-based law firm Kaplin Kirsch Rockwell argued the appeal for Santa Monica. A Department of Justice lawyer argued for the FAA.

Despite the FAA’s own rules for building new airports, Santa Monica was grandfathered in to allow the aircrafts for the convenience of pilots, according to FAA representatives in 2008. The representative who appeared before the Santa Monica City Council stumbled when questioned to clarify his comments on whether the FAA choose public safety or pilot convenience when the aircrafts were brought to the city. Cornered, the FAA representative landed on the slippery slope toward pilot expediency.

Once the City realized that the C and D jets were outside the safety parameters for the airport, but were operating there nonetheless, the Santa Monica City Council felt it had to act on behalf of residents, said Council member Kevin McKeown in an email.

“We are up against the federal government, an uphill battle, but a victory for us on this point would be huge,” McKeown said, “as it would validate our safety concerns about an airport surrounded by neighborhoods.”

Ardent airport activist Martin Rubin, co-founder of Concerned Residents Against Airport Pollution, said although most responses have not been “optimistic” in regards to the appeal, he hopes that a better safety threshold will be put in place.

The FAA put an injunction following the jet ban stopping the City’s law in its tracks. Rejecting the proposal to create barriers at the ends of the runway, therefore shortening the runway, and limiting even more aircrafts, the agency instead offered short pads of soft paving at the end of the tarmac to slow most, but not all, wayward planes. Otherwise the runway could be extended into the neighborhood by knocking homes down and forcing homeowners out.

The acquisition costs alone for the 647 homes estimated by the City to reside in the runway safety area at $560 million dollars, according to a City staff report. This does not include administrative costs, relocation expenses, and legal fees. The City Council rejected both options, according to McKeown, who has been a long-time advocate of tightening restrictions at the airport.

“I’m not willing to accept that putting our residents at risk is justified by the need of a few high rollers, film executives, and the occasional Governor to make convenient jet trips from an airport designed for smaller, slower, safer planes,” McKeown said.

Rulings for the D.C. Circuit Court are rarely released before a month or two of deliberation, with the possibility of up to a six-month wait, according to City council in Washington.

in News
Related Posts

Road Closures Expected During Demolition Of Parking Structure Three: Santa Monica Beat – May 23rd, 2022

May 23, 2022

May 23, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* Free Donuts At Randy’s Donuts For National Doughnut Day* Road Closures Expected...

Los Angeles Metro Sees 15.9 Percent Increase in Median Rent

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Median rent of $2,258, according to recent report By Dolores Quintana The ongoing pandemic has exacerbated the issues of housing...

New Renderings for Frank Gehry Hotel Development in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Project would include hotel, apartments, retail and a museum By Dolores Quintana Slowly but surely, plans for a  Frank Gehry-designed...

Shared Mobility Plummets in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Recent report also shows that nearly half of riders make over $100,000 By Sam Catanzaro Shared mobility use in Santa...

Christopher Dishlip Selected as Santa Monica’s New Assistant Director of Public Works

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Public Works Director Rick Valte announced the selection of Christopher Dishlip as Santa Monica’s new Assistant Director of Public Works....

Letter to Editor: Response to Himmelrich’s “We Walk the Talk” Column

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

By Beau Marks As a Santa Monica resident, I am dismayed by Sue Himmelrich’s response (“We Walk the Talk,” Santa...

Motional And UberEats Launch Autonomous Deliveries In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

There Are Plans For Expansion Into The Rest Of Los Angeles Motional, a global driverless technology leader, and Uber Technologies...

Winston Pies Opening Third Location In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

The restaurant used to be known as ButterCrust Pies Winston Pies is staying in Santa Monica when opening their third...

Only 10 Vaquita Porpoises Survive, But The Species May Not Be Doomed

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

Hope remains for the porpoise species not only survive but thrive with human help. By Stuart Wolpert The vaquita porpoise,...

The American Cinematheque Brings “Bleak Week” To Santa Monica’s Aero Theatre And The Los Feliz Three Theatre

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

33 Films From 18 Countries In One Week. By Dolores Quintana Sometimes when things are tough and you’re feeling down,...

Man Who Murdered His Family Members Pleads Guilty To Five Other Killings

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Escobar injured an additional seven other people as well.  By Dolores Quintana A man, Ramon Escobar, has pleaded guilty to...

The price of gasoline in Los Angeles County Has Experienced The Largest Increase Since February

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Gasoline prices in Orange County Have Also Increased By Dolores Quintana Regular self-serve gasoline in the county of Los Angeles...

Santa Monica Travel Summit Of 2022 Returns To Take On Tomorrow

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

The Event Was Held At The Jonathan Club On Santa Monica Beach By Staff Writer The 2022 Santa Monica Tourism...

City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program: Santa Monica Beat – May 16th, 2022

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* City Council Extends Santa Monica’s Parklet Program * Santa Monica High School Students...

1221 Ocean Avenue Complex Sold For Record Price

May 16, 2022

May 16, 2022

Sold for a record price of $330 million. By Dolores Quintana The Irvine Company has sold 1221 Ocean Avenue to...