As an avid supporter of General Aviation at KSMO, I can tell you that I am pleased that the Courts of Appeals decided to send this case back to the District Court to be heard and here is why:
1. Up through the present, the City of Santa Monica and the Airporttopark people have one excuse after another after another regarding why the Airport needs to close, none of which are supported by any sort of accurate study or polls.
2. Due process is an important part of our judicial system in this country and is something that should never be denied without very careful consideration. I believe the Courts of Appeals made the correct call on this, not because I don’t support the Airport, but rather because having a trial in Federal District Court finally gives Airport supporters the opportunity to put Community Leaders and Elected officials under oath and on the stand, where if they continue to lie, can be exposed to serious personal jeopardy in the form of perjury. Safe money says they will do everything they can to avoid being called to testify in the trial.
3. Having read the 1948 documents, The 1984 settlement documents, the attached grant assurances and a plethora of other transcripts, documents and official articles on this issue, I am supremely confident that the District Court will advise the City that its been a fact of law that when covenants are attached to land, those covenants are in fact permanent. This has been a widely accepted method of insuring compliance with an agreement in perpetuity as far as legal procedures go. The fact that the City of Santa Monica lawyers now claim they were not noticed is utter B.S. They were noticed that the covenants attached are permanent by the very language of the agreements and grant assurances. The City’s lawyers, unless they went to the ACME Night School of law and cooking class, would certainly have understood this most basic fact of law. As proof of this, I submit the signed documents bearing their signatures of acceptance and conformity. If they didn’t agree, they would not have signed.
4. Until the City of Santa Monica capitulates to common sense with regard to Airport closure and reverses course, I personally want the process to cost them as much as it possibly can in tax dollars. Sooner or later the real voters, and not the 10 noisemakers at each end of the runway, who all moved in after the Airport was built and operating, will start to make noise about the expenditure of tax dollars on this issue. Sooner or later, those voters will put a stop to the hemorrhaging of money that the City of Santa Monica is inflicting upon itself with all of these futile efforts to close what they cannot close. Sooner or later the citizenry of Santa Monica will recognize the manipulation and outright lies being perpetrated by the City in her attempts to strangle the airport, drive away businesses and discriminate against aviation businesses.
Sooner or later the cooking of the books will be exposed to the light and well, we all know how that ended up for the City of Bell a few years ago.
This airport is going to remain forever. That is simply a fact and I welcome the trial in Federal District Court because in the years it will take to actually have the trial, we will be able to easily obtain injunctions to compel the City to adhere to the grant assurances while the matter is in process before the court. One thing is definitely for certain, Federal District Judges do not like having their decisions made for them while a dispute is awaiting trial. They are historically very cooperative in issuing injunctions to prevent irreparable harm to businesses in these types of cases. I am completely sure that His Honor will not want the City acting in anyway that even resembles an action to further negatively impact the airport or the businesses there.
So yes, the Courts of Appeals has now set the stage for the City to finally have to appear and answer for her shenanigans and manipulations over the past years with regard to the airport.
If I were a City official involved in this mess, I would be very worried right now about the consequences of continuing to lie, cheat and manipulate in order to make my developer buddies happy.