BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                  AB 2333
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          AB 2333 (Nakano)
          As Amended  May 16, 2002
          Majority vote 

           TRANSPORTATION      11-7        APPROPRIATIONS      16-8        
          |Ayes:|Dutra, Chu, Kehoe, Liu,   |Ayes:|Steinberg, Alquist,       |
          |     |Longville, Nakano,        |     |Aroner, Cohn, Corbett,    |
          |     |Oropeza, Salinas,         |     |Correa, Diaz, Firebaugh,  |
          |     |Simitian, Strom-Martin,   |     |Goldberg, Papan, Pavley,  |
          |     |Vargas                    |     |Simitian, Keeley,         |
          |     |                          |     |Wiggins, Wright, Chan     |
          |     |                          |     |                          |
          |Nays:|Rod Pacheco, Bates,       |Nays:|Bates, Ashburn, Daucher,  |
          |     |Hollingsworth, La Suer,   |     |Maldonado, Negrete        |
          |     |Leach, Leslie, Mountjoy   |     |McLeod, Robert Pacheco,   |
          |     |                          |     |Runner, Zettel            |

           SUMMARY  :  Requires the Southern California Association of  
          Governments (SCAG) to assure that the aviation component of its  
          regional transportation plan (RTP) provides a fair-share  
          distribution of both the burdens and benefits of commercial  
          aviation among the four urbanized SCAG counties of the SCAG  
          region.  Specifically,  this bill  :  

          1)Sets forth findings regarding the projections for growth in  
            passenger and air cargo transportation at commercial airports  
            in the four urbanized counties of the SCAG region (Los  
            Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino) over the next  
            23 years (2025), and the importance of those projected trends  
            to the region's economy.  The bill also makes findings  
            regarding the environmental impact of drastic growth in air  
            traffic to adjacent communities.  Lastly, the bill declares  
            that it is in the interest of those urban counties to  
            distribute the burdens and benefits of commercial aviation in  
            a fair and even manner throughout the region.

          2)Requires that the aviation program within the SCAG regional  
            transportation plan be developed in a manner that assures a  
            fair-share distribution of both the burdens and benefits of  
            commercial aviation among the four urbanized counties.   


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            Directs SCAG, in determining a county's fair share  
            distribution, to assess the future passenger cargo demand that  
            is reasonably attributable to each county.

          3)Requires that SCAG, in developing the aviation program of the  
            RTP, adhere to the principles of environmental justice to the  
            extent that those principles conform to federal law, and  
            assure that no community of ethnic or racial minorities bear a  
            disproportionate share of the environmental burden of regional  
            aviation activity.

          4)Requires SCAG to annually review the master plans and airport  
            layout plans of each commercial airport for consistency with  
            the aviation component of the RTP.  The bill specifies that  
            the SCAG review shall include a determination of whether  
            airports in each of the identified counties are making timely  
            and reasonable progress in meeting the RTP goals relative to  
            projected air cargo and passenger demand.

           EXISTING LAW  : 

          1)Requires designated regional transportation planning agencies  
            and metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) to prepare and  
            adopt an RTP that includes a policy element, an action  
            element, and a financial element.  The plan must be directed  
            at achieving a coordinated and balanced regional  
            transportation system, including all transportation modes,  
            goods movement and aviation facilities and services. 

          2)Specifies that the RTP must consider alternate planning  
            scenarios and be action-oriented and pragmatic, considering  
            both the short-term and long-term future, and shall present  
            clear, concise policy guidance to local and state officials.   
            Each transportation-planning agency is required to consider  
            and incorporate, as appropriate, the transportation plans of  
            state, federal, local, and private entities.

          3)Provides that transportation capital improvement projects  
            relating to highway and rail transit shall be funded, in part,  
            from the Inter Regional Transportation Improvement Program  

           FISCAL EFFECT  :  According to the Assembly Appropriations  
          Committee analysis, this measure would result in negligible  
          costs to the SCAG to modify its current RTP process.


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           COMMENTS  :  SCAG is the federally-designated MPO for the six  
          counties that make up the Southern California region:  Imperial,  
          Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura.   
          The region encompasses a population exceeding 15 million persons  
          in an area of more than 38,000 square miles.  In addition to the  
          responsibilities that are established in state law, SCAG is  
          required by federal law to perform research and develop plans  
          for transportation, growth management, hazardous waste  
          management, and air quality.

          In 2001, SCAG issued its updated RTP, which includes a separate  
          component for aviation.  The aviation component of the RTP  
          provides projections for growth in regional aviation traffic,  
          and recommendations for the expansion and improvement of airport  
          facilities over the next two decades (2025).  SCAG projects that  
          demand for air passenger travel will nearly double, to 167  
          million annual passengers, and air cargo demand will triple, to  
          9.5 million tons during that same period.  

          The RTP identifies the established commercial service airports  
          as the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Ontario Airport  
          in San Bernardino County, Palm Springs Airport in Riverside  
          County, John Wayne Airport in Orange County and Long Beach  
          Airport in Los Angeles County.  SCAG reports that collectively,  
          these facilities represent 7,900 acres of commercial airport  
          facilities that are in service in the region.  By comparison,  
          Chicago's O'Hare airport sits on 7,700 acres and Denver  
          International Airport on 34,000 acres.  The RTP projects that,  
          without the proposed expansion of additional regional airport  
          facilities, air passenger capacity will fall short by 28% of  
          projected demand.  

          The RTP recommends that agencies in the region develop a  
          decentralized airport system, utilizing former military bases  
          and joint use facilities, rather than expanding existing  
          urbanized airports.  SCAG argues that this type of expansion  
          would generate an additional 34,000 acres of capacity.  The RTP  
          identifies several former military bases and joint use  
          facilities for potential expansion: George and Norton Air Force  
          Bases (San Bernardino County), March Air Reserve Base (Riverside  
          County), Palmdale Air Force Plant (Los Angeles), and El Toro  
          Marine Corps Air Station (Orange County).  

          The author argues that the communities in the South Bay area of  


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          Los Angeles County have coped with the crushing burden of  
          hosting one of the country's busiest airports, and that AB 2333  
          would address significant equity issues regarding regional  
          aviation benefits and burdens.  This measure is intended to  
          bring about a more balanced distribution of aviation traffic  
          among the urban counties in the SCAG region (Los Angeles,  
          Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino).  Citing the need for a  
          "fair-share distribution" of air passenger and cargo demand  
          among the four urbanized counties, the City of El Segundo argues  
          that AB 2333 is intended to provide incentives for counties  
          within and adjacent to the Los Angeles basin to develop and  
          implement projects that help spread airport capacity across  
          several under utilized facilities in the region.  

          Opponents of this measure, including the City of Los Angeles,  
          and several cities in Orange County, have expressed their  
          concern with AB 2333, arguing that the bill would take away  
          local control by establishing conformity requirements for a  
          document that is only intended to be used for planning purposes.  
           The Mayor of Los Angeles argues that "AB 2333 will shift local  
          control over airport planning and development to an agency that  
          is neither designed or equipped to determine whether airports  
          and counties are meeting their 'fair share' requirement."  

          In many cases, there are market-based (Palmdale) or political  
          and environmental (LAX, El Toro) barriers to developing or  
          expanding several of the airport facilities that are identified  
          in the RTP.  Airlines have expressed a reluctance to locate  
          terminals in many of the less urbanized sites for airport  
          facilities.  In Los Angeles, LAX continues to be the dominant  
          facility for regional air passenger and cargo traffic, but  
          neighboring communities (including the sponsor of this measure,  
          the City of El Segundo), have spearheaded efforts to place legal  
          and political obstacles in the way of any further LAX expansion.  
           It is not clear whether all of the recommendations for airport  
          expansion in the RTP are politically or economically feasible.

          In March of this year, the voters in Orange County approved  
          Measure W, which rezoned the land at the El Toro site for parks  
          and educational purposes.  Immediately after the election, the  
          United State Navy announced their intent to offer the land for  
          sale to development interests.  El Toro was identified as the  
          most viable alternative of the potential new airport facilities  
          that were identified in the RTP, with the potential to absorb  
          nearly 30 million annual passengers by 2025.  


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          AB 2333 would require SCAG to annually review local airport  
          planning documents for conformance with the "fair share  
          distribution" review standards established by the bill.  It is  
          not clear that there is a consensus-based way to quantify a  
          county's "fair share" distribution of aviation activity.  

          It appears that the recommendations for airport facility and  
          ground-access improvements that are contained in the RTP are  
          driven by projections for growth in air travel over the next 23  
          years.  Many of the projections for growth in aviation traffic  
          were developed before the state experienced the recent, drastic  
          declines in air traffic and prolonged security screening process  
          at airports around the country.  It is not clear whether the  
          current dip in aviation activity was factored into SCAG's  
          projections for growth or if this reduction is temporary in  
          nature.  Should the RTP be updated before requirements are  
          placed on counties and local airports?  What impact would this  
          new trend have on the RTP projections and their recommendations  
          for airport improvements?
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Andrew Antwih / TRANS. / (916)  
          319-2093FN: 0005155