By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley) – The Board of Supervisors celebrated the agreement announced today to return Ontario International Airport to local control.
Ontario International Airport is one of the most powerful components of the region’s economy and the deal reached between the City of Los Angeles and the Ontario International Airport Authority means the airport can be rehabilitated, marketed and managed to the advantage of San Bernardino County and all of Southern California.
“I am pleased that there will no longer be concern that the airport is being held back from realizing its full potential,” said Fourth District Supervisor Curt Hagman. “As the only airport in the Southern California region that is not legally constrained by a maximum number of passengers, Ontario Airport has tremendous potential for growth and becoming a major transportation hub. I look forward to being closely involved with the transition and future success of the airport.”
For years, the Board of Supervisors has supported the efforts to set Ontario International Airport free from the ownership of Los Angeles World Airports for the benefit of our residents, visitors and businesses. In August 2013, the Board of Supervisors convened a special study session to discuss the decline of the airport and how to bring it back to serve our growing population and bolster our continued economic recovery.
“Ontario Airport is a critical asset to the success of the Inland Empire. We have been working towards this goal for some time and I am pleased that the economic future of our region looks brighter,” said Hagman, whose district includes Ontario International Airport. “Regaining local control of the airport allows our region to control its own destiny and will no doubt be a major driver of the county’s economy and the region’s economy.”
Board of Supervisors Chairman James Ramos agreed.
“Regaining local control of the airport is excellent news for our county,” Ramos said. “I applaud all efforts made by the parties involved in reaching this agreement.”
“Local ownership of ONT is a critical component in the Inland Empire’s effort to ensure continued economic recovery and continued growth,” said Robert A. Lovingood, Vice Chairman of the Board. “This will make our Inland Empire communities the desired areas within Southern California to live, work, and play.”
“Our challenge now is making the airport thrive to benefit our local economy,” said Second District Supervisor Janice Rutherford. “The airline industry has changed dramatically since the Great Recession and we now have to find and market ONT’s competitive advantage in this new market.”
“The Ontario Airport represents new economic and job development opportunities for our residents,” said Fifth District Supervisor Josie Gonzales. “Regaining local control of the airport ensures it will be used to the benefit of our region.”