Sunday, June 9, 2013 – 08:00 a.m.
When will San Bernardino International Airport (SBIA) officials stop exaggerating and lying about what’s happening at the mostly dormant former Norton Air Force Base?
Though one thing is for certain! They haven’t learned their lesson yet.
In a continuous effort to justify the squandering of some $200 million in taxpayer dough on the ridiculous notion of attracting scheduled passenger airline traffic, instead of cargo operations, at the defunct facility, officials seem to relish telling falsehoods of new business deals to hide behind their inept decision-making.
After all, who wants to be blamed for the single biggest “airport to nowhere” blunder in the nation?
The latest fairy tale arises in an article titled “Boeing testing at San Bernardino International Airport” published in Saturday’s edition of The Sun newspaper.
In the story SBIA officials state that Boeing has resumed aircraft testing at the facility. A true statement.
But other assertions made in the article are complete fabrications, and Boeing wasn’t about to have any part of it.
Let’s dissect, shall we.
In the story, SBIA Executive Director A.J. Wilson says:
“I think they like the airport,” Wilson said. “The trouble was they had previously worked with Mr. Spencer and they didn’t like Mr. Spencer’s handling of the airport. We contacted them when we were in control of the airport, and they liked what they saw.”
But, Boeing spokeswoman Sandy Angers had the following to say:
“No one person influences our flight test activities,” Angers said. “Boeing considers our test requirements as well as the capabilities
and availability of air fields and other test facilities. Boeing chose the San Bernardino facility because of three factors: hangar size, availability and weather.”
The article also says the following:
Reasons for the return also included the proximity to other testing facilities — including Edwards Air Force Base; Roswell, N.M. and Fresno — and “San Bernardino airport’s great support of our test activities,” Angers said.
Then there is the expert analysis from Patrick Morris, Mayor of bankrupt San Bernardino, who is the primary cheerleader for blowing the $200 million:
Mayor Pat Morris, who is president of the airport’s governing board, said the benefits brought by Boeing go beyond just the airport.
“They brought 90 employees from Seattle,” Morris said. “They have a host of cars that they’ve rented, they’re renting hotels and eating meals out of Hospitality (Lane). It shows the remarkably valuable asset we have, and it’s being utilized as we speak.”
All of the airport’s space is leased out and many of its operations are now rented out, showing interest in the airport from companies besides Boeing, he said.
We invite you to go out and look at the near fully-leased out facility for any signs of real activity. Please go look there during the day, night or even weekends.