Sun, Jul 17, 2005
Plan Replaces Former SMO Fees Ruled 'Unjustly Discriminatory'
The NBAA gave its thumbs
up this week to FAA approval of a new landing-fee structure for
Santa Monica Municipal Airport (SMO). The new landing-fee plan -
approved by Santa Monica City officials on June 21 and scheduled to
become effective August 1 - replaces a previous program that was
rejected by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) last January
on the grounds that it unjustly discriminated against certain types
"We are pleased that Santa Monica City officials accepted the
FAA's ruling and have produced a landing-fee policy that honors the
law and serves in the best interests of the airport and community,"
said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen.
Under the new SMO landing-fee program, "itinerant" aircraft
(those based outside the airport) will be charged landing fees at a
uniform rate of $2.07 per thousand pounds of maximum certified
gross landing weight, regardless of size. The landing fees will not
apply to aircraft based at SMO.
The new landing-fee structure for SMO was developed in response
to a complaint about the former fee structure filed by NBAA and two
of its Member Companies with the FAA in October 2003. That filing
contented that SMO's previous landing-fee program was unjustly
discriminatory and unlawful. In January of this year, the FAA
concurred, stating that the fees violated federal law, and that
Santa Monica Airport would be ineligible for federal airport
improvement funds until the fees were repealed and replaced with a
suitable landing-fee structure.
Last month, Santa Monica City officials submitted a new airport
landing-fee plan to the FAA. The Agency conditionally accepted the
city's proposal, and stated that if it were implemented, the city
would once again be eligible for federal financial assistance. On
June 21, the Santa Monica City Council implemented the new
structure through the adoption of Resolution 10047 (CCS).
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