It is a violation of local law for either the planning board or the city council to “approve” any airport terminal plan ahead of the voters

 

This is a simple one today: this planned action of theirs is a serious violation of Measure B.

The only thing these two groups can do is recommend that any terminal plan go on the ballot for the voters to decide. They cannot formally vote to “approve” of a plan ahead of time.

The clock is ticking for members of the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority to get all the required approvals they need to place a proposed 14-gate replacement terminal project on the Nov. 8 ballot.

The authority ultimately needs approval from the Burbank City Council and the city’s voters to move forward with its plans. However, the proposal to build a 355,000-square-foot terminal — preferably on the northeastern section of the airfield known as the B-6 parcel — will first need to be reviewed by the Burbank Planning Board.

On Thursday, the five-member board will consider whether it should follow city staff’s recommendation and suggest that council members green light the project or tell the City Council otherwise.

It’s up to the voters to greenlight this project. Not anyone else.

That’s the law !

“We’re very optimistic, but we’re still crossing our Ts and dotting our Is,” said Lucy Burghdorf, spokesperson for the Hollywood Burbank Airport. “We look for a favorable outcome.”

…Should the Planning Board give the project a thumbs up, the City Council will hold meetings on July 25 and 26 to either approve or deny the plans for the replacement terminal. However, before those hearings, authority members are expected to approve the environmental-impact report during a meeting on July 11.

If council members approve the project, it will trigger a vote under Measure B, which states that voters must approve any replacement terminal project on the B-6 parcel for construction to begin.

Sorry, but it’s the voters who must approve the project before anyone else gets involved. That then “triggers” any relevant council and city approval actions. The Leader is completely LYING TO THEIR READERS about how this is supposed to work under local law.

Here’s the law:

2-3-112: AIRPORT AGREEMENTS:

No approval by the City of Burbank of any agreement between the City and the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority for a relocated or expanded airport terminal project, or any other discretionary act by the City relating to the approval of a relocated or expanded airport terminal project shall be valid and effective unless previously approved by the voters voting at a City election. [Added by Ord. No. 3541 (Measure B approved by the voters on 11/7/00), eff. 5/24/00.]

See the “previously approved” part? That means something.

If the council and planning board approves this terminal first, before the citizen vote, it will then require another citizens’ referendum to reverse this official action of the council’s if the citizens’ vote ends up being a “no.” That’s why Measure B specifically states that the citizen approval must be first.

These people are just incorrigible lawbreakers. Even Golonski agrees with us here — and he helped to draft Measure B back in 2001! The council can only  approve it going in the ballot for the residents to decide.

THEY CANNOT APPROVE THE PLAN ITSELF BEFORE THE RESIDENTS VOTE.

Burbank residents don’t get “final approval,” like a checkoff or validation of sorts. They get SOLE approval. There is no room in Measure B for the council and planning board to get involved with acts and approvals ahead of the voters.

There is also no mechanism in Measure B that can either reverse or vacate a previous council act of approval on any airport terminal. So again, it would require a separate referendum to do so. That’s state law.

We’ll cite this again– it’s Barlow’s original ballot statement for the Measure B election in 2001:

Impartial Analysis from the City Attorney

The City of Burbank and the Burbank– Glendale– Pasadena Airport (the “Airport”) have been involved in a lengthy dispute regarding the Airport’s proposed construction of a new passenger terminal. The Burbank City Council supports the idea of replacing the existing terminal, but only if the Airport agrees to certain conditions limiting the growth and impacts of the Airport.

This ballot measure would add Section 11– 112 to the Burbank Municipal Code. If passed, this ballot measure would require the City to obtain the approval of the majority of voters voting in an election prior to the City granting the Airport any discretionary approvals or entering into an agreement related to a relocated or expanded Airport terminal project. In other words, no discretionary act or agreement by the City to approve a relocated or expanded Airport terminal would be valid and effective unless previously approved by a majority of voters.

Thus, this ballot measure would require the City to hold a special municipal election, submitting the issue on the ballot for the approval of the voters, prior to granting the Airport any discretionary approvals or entering into an agreement related to a relocated or expanded Airport terminal. Although the exact costs are unknown, it is estimated that, at the present time, the City’s costs for holding such special municipal election could range from approximately $10,000 to $70,000 per election depending on whether the ballot proposal is submitted to the voters by itself at the special municipal election or whether the special election is conducted in conjunction with an already scheduled municipal or county election.

If this ballot measure is not passed, decisions regarding a relocated or expanded Airport terminal project, including agreements, may be made by the City without the need for prior voter approval, unless such voter approval is required by another law.

/s/ Dennis A. Barlow, City Attorney

As the lawyers say, this language is “clear and compelling.”

Which means that our current council-majority and city staff members are completely violating the express terms and conditions of Measure B. And they all know it, too.

 

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “It is a violation of local law for either the planning board or the city council to “approve” any airport terminal plan ahead of the voters

  1. Anonymous 3

    Crickets.

    Your socks don’t seem to care.

    Nor should they.

  2. Irwin Fletcher

    “If the ballot measure fails, airport officials have said that they would forgo building the facility on the northeast section and construct the replacement terminal on the southwest quadrant, which they say does not require voter approval because the property is owned by the airport.”

    Is this true? Then why risk a vote at all? Why not just build it on the southwest quadrant?

    • semichorus

      It’s just an empty threat — blackmail. That’s a very inadequate spot for them, and would require LA cooperation.

      Burbank would still have approval authority over any additional concessions they might need on their own property — but the council wants to violate Measure B by giving them vested rights on those two other sites. They’re trying to slip this through to help with the blackmail.

  3. Citizen Cane

    The public entity can make recommendations and should present the plans and the expected cost of any expansion to the public before there is a go ahead on the project. The voters have the right to vote yes or no, and until that time, only the plans should be worked on. It looks like the city and the airport really want to push this through.

    • semichorus

      Yes. They can place it on the ballot. What they can’t do is take a prior formal action to “approve” any agreement with the Authority. That comes after the vote. Under Measure B the voters have sole and exclusive authority, not “final authority.”

      The council can’t waive the application of Measure B to their existing property either, if the Authority should need approvals on it, which could happen– although they have more existing rights there than on B-6.

      These are two serious and inexcusable violations of Measure B. They just don’t care, obviously. Under their planned setup, a “no” vote from the residents won’t reverse a previous yes vote from the council. There’d have to be a separate referendum for that, because Measure B contains no such reversal language.

      This appears to be Albano and the council’s overall legal strategy to get a new terminal in.

      • DixieFlyer

        Hope you enjoyed the Cheerleading article in the Leader.

        The quotes from Planning Board members were only bested by the outrageously self serving remarks by Lucy from the Airport Authority.

        Staff patting one-another on the back.

        Albino needs to learn who’s the Boss.

        The People of BURBANK.

        • semichorus

          This is a really serious violation of the law that Albano’s encouraging. The planning board has no business formally acting to “approve” anything before the vote. Nor does the city council.

          They really just don’t care, do they? Whatever works. And since when are AUTHORITY people being used as spokesmen for the City of Burbank, or as any kind of authoritative source?

          City people must think that if they don’t say anything about this terminal right now then they’re following Measure B. But neither staff nor elected representatives can vote to APPROVE of anything yet, either.

          • DixieFlyer

            After TWENTY some years of backroom dealings, they want to rush for the November 2016 ballot.

            The cost$ have NOT been revealed to the Public.

            As the members of OUR City Council appoint the Burbank Authority representatives, it would make better sense to Elect City Council Members at the same time Measure B vote is taken.

            Many different “agenda’s” will be on the November ballot.

            Our Municipal election can “focus” on BURBANK issues.

            The last edition of the burbank follower should remove any & all doubt
            about their ability to present this issue in a professional manner.

            • semichorus

              Notice how the paper refuses to carry any criticism or dissent about the project? Compare that to 20 years ago. They’re deliberately marginalizing it.

              No excuse for that. Yes, these days they’re nothing but Stenographers to the Establishment. Imagine spending all that money on Columbia J-School and being satisfied with such a job. Wouldn’t you hate to be young now and have to play such a cocksucker role? Maybe they don’t know the difference.

              That airport project — if approved by the voters — is going to be so, so FUBAR — what what all this background and heritage of bad faith. No doubt about this, because that’s what happens.

              It’s just un-fucking-believable how much they’re all violating Measure B here, isn’t it? Even Golonski says so. No surprise to the old ROAR backers though, because they’ve said all along that the airport crowd was never going to play by the rules.

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