ONTARIO AIRPORT Dutton could revive transfer bill
State Sen. Bob Dutton stood up from his table at a recent economic forecast event to announce he planned to push ahead with his long-tabled bill that would create an Ontario International Airport authority made up of local leaders and facilitate the transfer of the Inland airport from the city of Los Angeles to that local authority.
It sounded imminent, but it's more like a maybe.
Dutton, R-Rancho Cucamonga, made the announcement at the 2012 State of the Region conference in Ontario on April 6, the same event where economist John Husing was applauded after suggesting Inland residents should file a class action lawsuit against the city of Los Angeles for being forced to drive to LAX to catch a flight instead of Ontario airport, where fares are often higher.
Dutton, whose SB 446 bill passed the Senate last year but has yet to go before an Assembly committee. The bill was introduced to spur negotiations between Inland leaders, mainly the city of Ontario and San Bernardino County, and the city of Los Angeles.
Ontario City Councilman Alan Wapner, who has been leading the effort to gain control of the airport, said that Dutton later said he wouldn't seek an Assembly vote until Ontario gives him the green light.
"You let me know what you want me to do with it," Wapner said Dutton told him.
Dutton is one of two Republicans running for San Bernardino County's redrawn 31st Congressional District.
Dutton said he likens himself to being a facilitator and he'd ultimately like the city of Ontario and Los Angeles to work it out. Nonetheless, he said he would push the bill forward after the city of Los Angeles comes back with a report in early May looking at the feasibility of transferring the airport.