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Bill Rosendahl - Council District 11






Thursday, December 07, 2006

A United Front

Last night, I joined more than 200 of my LAX-area constituents at a highly-charged public hearing to voice objection to a LAWA proposal that could move northern runways 340 feet into Westchester and Playa del Rey neighborhoods.

I was thrilled to be joined in my opposition by representatives of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Congresswoman Jane Harman, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, and Supervisor Don Knabe. We stood firmly in the camp of our constituents, who remain unconvinced that the north airfield poses safety risks.

Let me be very clear: this is common sense, not NIMBYism. If we hear a compelling case that there is a genuine risk to public safety, we will fix it - expeditiously. But absent any evidence, we can't and we won't go on blind faith. My message to the FAA is very clear: "We are listening. Make the case. Convince us."

I am very happy that Mayor Villaraigosa, through his staff, announced tonight that he was asking LAWA to hire an independent consultant to evaluate safety on the airfield. It's a smart thing to do.

It also worth repeating that even if the FAA convinces us there is a need to make changes to the north airfield, that does not automatically mean LAWA would need to move runways north. There are four north airfield options on the table; two of them fix the problem by moving a runway south, closer to the central terminal.

Last year's historic settlement agreement promised a new day for LAX and its neighbors. This is the time to make that promise real. We need to make decisions based on facts, and not on assumptions. And we need to be open to new ideas, and a bold, new vision for LAX.



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