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Council May Let Burbank Voters Decide on Airport

March 17, 2000

BURBANK — The City Council will consider letting city voters decide on a proposed $300-million airport terminal, even after a proposed initiative on the issue was disqualified from the ballot.

The measure would have required voters' approval of any new Burbank Airport terminal exceeding 200,000 square feet. Airport officials want to build a 330,000-square-foot terminal to meet passenger demand.

The initiative was disqualified Wednesday by City Clerk Judie Sarquiz, who said signed petitions did not include the names of the measure's chief proponents, as required by state law.

Burbank Mayor Stacey Murphy and Councilman Bob Kramer said they would ask the City Council Tuesday to use its authority to put the measure on the ballot anyway.

Murphy and Kramer said it was unfair to torpedo the initiative on what she called a technicality.

"They made one mistake and I don't think they should have to be made to start all over again," Murphy said.

The initiative was circulated by a group called Restore Our Airport Rights, which says the larger terminal would mean more flights and thus more noise.

Councilman David Laurell said he was not sure he would support putting the measure before voters, because he had "great concern about it's constitutionality and opening the city up to lawsuits."

City officials said the measure could be placed on the city's February 2001 ballot, or a special election could be called.

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