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Does the County Really Need Another Airport?

July 17, 1994

* We Californians never learn. Repeatedly, the courts have struck down initiatives that attempt to plan our lives or take away constitutional rights, but again the politicians in this county and in our cities haven't got the courage to show the necessary leadership that is required to occupy the offices they hold. It's a crime to waste taxpayers' money. Sounds harsh, but it is true.

Federal law requires that the impacted community make the decision concerning what base reuses they would like to see. It is rather peculiar that "certain rich people in this county want to manipulate other poor people for their own selfish interests." But isn't that politics as usual?

We citizens who are unabashedly opposed to an airport at El Toro need politicians who can lead us into more productive, real, thoughtful jobs. To the beleaguered taxpayer, two active airports next to each other make no financial sense--especially when the second airport is a Band-Aid approach. We need a world-class solution. Are there any politicians in Orange County with the leadership and vision to achieve this result?

THOMAS M. WHALING

Irvine

* Robert Stein in his letter "Protests Don't Fly" (July 10) is absolutely correct in that the Orange County airport was built with taxpayers' money, but he neglects to mention that perhaps 90% of all such facilities in the U.S. (and some foreign lands as well) have been so constructed, and this of course includes El Toro. As far as the danger connected in flying from El Toro, apparently he has never done so or he would know differently, as the statistics will testify.

It is recognized that as a resident of the "Southern County" area he has a perfect right to try to improve his environment, but at the same time he must also realize that the rest of us likewise have that right, and, yes, the necessity. We in the Newport Beach area already have more than our share of irritation, and if we must have more of the same in the county, certainly others should share. If El Toro were to be developed into more housing, would we be happier with the thousands more additions to an already overburdened highway system?

ALAN L. BLUM

Balboa Island

* Alan J. Nestlinger ("Assessing the County's Air Traffic Needs," Letters, July 3) needs to be corrected with regard to his comment " . . . the flight paths into and out of El Toro are are already cleared of residential housing."

On our visits to friends in Laguna Hills, it was quite obvious that the flight paths are not clear of residential housing. The level of noise inflicted on them as the jets approach for landing is very disturbing. All conversation stops, the television or radio cannot be heard and the house shakes.

From my own experience living in Orangetree (the closest residential community to the base in Irvine), the larger, less powerful aircraft often take off (into the prevailing wind) over our community. The associated deafening noise and window rattling is quite distressing for us too.

No doubt the North County cities will harp on about how much quieter commercial aircraft are. Whether the noise level is 80dBa or 100dBa is irrelevant. It is loud and should not be permitted over residential communities.

ANDREW W. EDWARDS

Irvine

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