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Meeting the County's Growing Aviation Needs

July 07, 2002

Re "Limited John Wayne Expansion OKd," June 26:

The settlement agreement on John Wayne Airport expires in 3 1/2 years. Sure, the county Board of Supervisors passed a 5-0 resolution in favor of an extension. One would think this would be a time of hugs and kisses for the whole county. However, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Air Transport Assn.--not local politicians--are the final authority on the matter.

It's amusing to hear Supervisor Todd Spitzer, the overconfident lawyer and the dragon slayer of El Toro, say he will litigate to prevent future growth of John Wayne. Sorry, but it's not that simple. When the powerful ATA insists that there is demand for more airport growth in Orange County, it will prevail in federal court on interstate commerce grounds.

Trying to stop the ATA is akin to trying to prevent the tide from rising. However, the water can be diverted. So where will the rising tide of future flights occur? It's inevitable, they will have to go somewhere. Unless, Spitzer wants to see more approaches to John Wayne going over his district, he had best come up with a solution--possibly another site--that will have the ATA 's blessing.

Rex Ricks

Huntington Beach

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