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SANTA ANA : City to Quit Regional Airport Authority

September 09, 1993

The city will pull out of a regional airport authority of North County cities, officials have decided.

Along with Stanton, Anaheim, Yorba Linda, Newport Beach and Garden Grove, Santa Ana was a member of the Orange County Cities Airport Authority, officials said. But Santa Ana has not been an active member in the authority for three years, they said.

"We don't feel you ought to belong to a group if you aren't going to participate," City Manager David N. Ream said. "No one on the council has been interested in participating."

The move comes as several groups vie with the county to be lead agency in planning for uses of El Toro Marine Corps Air Station after its closure.

In August, the North County cities of Stanton and Garden Grove joined with Los Alamitos to form the Orange County Regional Airport Authority. Officials from several South County cities are planning to form their own agency, saying their interests were not fully represented in the county's plan.

The Orange County Cities Airport Authority was created several years ago to seek a second site for a major Orange County airport--but not specifically to explore El Toro as such a site, said Garden Grove City Councilman Mark Leyes. Because the authority is no longer a vehicle for decision making, it "is almost irrelevant at this point," Leyes said.

Ream said Santa Ana will "wait and see" what happens in negotiations between cities and the county on El Toro before throwing its support to the county or one of the new city authorities.

"I think that as the interests sort themselves out to the point where there's some consensus, we'll be an active participant," Ream said. "At this point, it's not in our sphere of influence."

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