Fontana Mayor Acquanetta Warren delivers her state of the city address on Thursday, January 26, 2012 at the Jessie Turner Community Center in Fontana.
Jim Steinberg, Staff Writer
Created: 01/26/2012 11:35:17 AM PST
FONTANA – Mayor Acquanetta Warren on Thursday vowed to join forces with Ontario city leaders in the quest to wrestle ownership of L.A./Ontario International Airport from Los Angeles’ control.
That pledge was part of broad strategy focused on regional cooperation as Fontana moves forward with 2012 and in the succeeding years.
In her State of the City address, the mayor cited recent agreements signed with Rialto and Colton to participate in sharing the expenses – and reaping the benefits – from the new helicopter the Fontana Police Department expects to begin flying in March.
Warren said Fontana and its neighbors must unite on global trade issues, such as the ongoing expansion of the Panama Canal, which when completed in 2014, threatens to siphon away as much as 25 percent of the cargo arriving at Los Angeles, Long Beach and other West Coast ports.
This is a vital issue to the region because Fontana and its neighbors are large players in the goods moving business.
Several political leaders from the county and neighboring cities attended Warren’s address. And several spoke, including Ontario Mayor Paul Leon.
“We are mad as Hell and not going to take it anymore…we are going to break a leg to get it (the airport) back, if we have to,” Leon said.
Warren made little mention of the dissolution of redevelopment agencies in Fontana and more than 400 other cities across California.
“As far as I am concerned, redevelopment is dead… And instead of having a funeral, we are going to have a party. We are not going to miss one beat with redevelopment going away…we are moving on,” she said.
Warren noted that plans are in serious discussion phases for two new Wal-Marts in Fontana, one in the north and one on the southside and a large industrial park on the southside of town.
The north Fontana location for a Wal-Mart will be on the southwest corner of South Highland and Sierra Avenue, Don Williams, director of community development, said in an interview.
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