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CIVIL AERONAUTICS ADMINISTRAT.ON,
Washington, D. C., May 14, 1948. The Honorable ROBERT F. BRADFORD,
Governor of Massachusetts, Statehouse, Boston, Mass. MY DEAR GOVERNOR BRADFORD: It was a great pleasure to see you on Tuesday and have the opportunity of discussing with you and your associates the problems in connection with Logan Airport.
At lunch and thereafter we discussed not only the problem of the $600,000 of Federal funds, but also the proposed reorganization bills.
In accordance with your verbal request and that contained in Mr. Stevens' letter of May 5, I have placed the taxpayers' bill in the hands of our Airport Management Division and of our general counsel so that we may submit to you and Mr. Stevens on Monday morning some additional suggestions which may be of assistance.
As mentioned to Mr. Stevens, in answer to his question, the one point in regard to the proposed reorganization that stands out in my mind, and in the minds of our airport management consultants, is the necessity of having one unpaid commission or council for the supervision and coordination of the aeronautics director's functions and the management and development of state-owned airports. There is no doubt, I believe, in anybody's mind that the functions of airport management, construction and development and of aviation regulation and promotion require not only able supervision, but also constant and close coordination, I know that is an accepted fact which we here must constantly bear in mind and act upon. There appears no reason why it should not be equally true in a State. Consequently, a well-paid director of aviation under, or chairman of, a single State aviation commission or council, who could supervise, direct, and coordinate the activities of the State airport managements and the director of aviation regulation and promotion, appears essential if the existing confused set-up is to be satisfactorily cured, rather than partially continued.
With reference to the $600,000, after lengthy discussion of the matter the regional office and we in Washington have agreed to provide you with what you, Mr. Stevens and Mr. Smith apparently regard as adequate time in which to obtain passage, or sufficient progress with the air lines and your legislators to assure passage of your reorganization and bond-issue bills.
In order to do this and simultaneously to make it clear beyond question that we cannot, in justice to other sponsors of projects, permit any further delays, we are today withdrawing the $600,000 from Logan Airport as of May 31, 1948, unless we receive from Massachusetts on or before that date an official project application which includes the signing of the assurance agreement. We will not require at this time that the application include the engineering data which is ordinarily a part of the original project application.
Should the $600,000 be withdrawn, the discretionary fund portion, namely, about $442,000, will have to go to projects outside Massachusetts; and while the State apportionment part will, of course, be expended in Massachusetts, it will probably have to be used for other projects than Logan.
I hope this decision will enable Massachusetts to accomplish what all of us interested in avaition want for it. I can assure you that the district and regional offices of the Civil Aeronautics Administration, as well as we in Washington, will be glad to continue to cooperate and assist in every way possible. Sincerely yours,
GEORGE W. BURGESS, Deputy Administrator.
Mr. HALE. Thank you very much, Mr. Lee.
CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES,
House of Representatives,
Washington, D. Č., May 17, 1948. STATEMENT OF HON. GEORGE H. FALLON OF MARYLAND Mr. Chairman and members of the committee: I understand this committee has under consideration H. R. 6180, introduced April 8, 1948, to amend the Federal Airport Act, which proposes to relieve air carriers from the payment of taxes and fees and the obligation to purchase supplies from the owners of airports.
The following is quoted from a letter that I recently received from the mayor of Baltimore which outlines clearly the problem with which we are confronted:
“As you are well aware, Baltimore is now completing its new International Friendship Airport at a cost of many millions of dollars to the taxpayers of Balti
If this bill is passed it will seriously affect revenues which the city of Baltimore, in the planning of its new airport, has anticipated receiving. The cost of operating airports, especially municipally owned airports, should be met by such income.”
I sincerely believe that if this bill is passed, it will seriously affect the financing and operation of not only the Baltimore Airport, but other municipally owned airports throughout the country.
I therefore urge the committee to report this bill unfavorably.
DAYTON MUNICIPAL AIRPORT,
Vandalia, Ohio, May 19, 1948. CHAIRMAN, COMMITTEE ON INTERSTATE AND FOREIGN COMMERCE,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. DEAR SIR: This is to express our total opposition to the passage of H. R. 6180, which I believe is now before your committee for hearings.
The purpose of this bill is to amend section 11, of the Federal Airport Act (U. S. C., title 49, sec. 1110) to an extent that would be highly discriminatory against all airports which have received Federal aid, by reason of the scheduled air lines being enabled to receive personal property of all kinds without the payment of any rentals, fees, taxes, or other charges, which are so vitally important to the airports of the United States.
We feel strongly that the great majority of existing contracts between the municipal airports and the scheduled air lines are already vicious and unfair to such airport operators.
We again request that your committee exert every effort to prevent this proposed legislation from even reaching the floor of the House. Very truly yours,
HAMILTON WEBSTER, Airport Manager.
THE CITY AND COUNTY OF DENVER,
Denver, Colo., April 30, 1948. Hon. CHARLES WOLVERTON, Chairman, Interstate and Foreign Commerce, Committee,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. DEAR SIR: A bill entitled H. R. 6180, introduced by Leonard W. Hall, has been brought to my attention and I wish at this time to comment on the undesirable factors involved.
This bill in effect would take away many rights of airports that are now used to defray costs of operation. It is essential to good airport management that we be allowed not only to manage our own affairs, but run or handle allied businesses that are used in conjunction with airports. The gasoline clause in this bill is particularly dangerous and one that would do untold harm to our operation. It is only right that people who use the airport facilities pay a justifiable charge, and to eliminate this would be to continue to subsidize the air carriers even more.
I also believe that there is some question as to the constitutionality of the type of legislation that would exempt the carriers from payment of any tax levied by state and local taxing organizations. I am sure that every major airport operator and city administration would agree with me in this respect. Yours very truly,
C. J. LOWEN, Director of Aviation.
BOARD OF AVIATION COMMISSIONERS,
Fort WAYNE, IND.,
Baer Field, May 14, 1948. Hon. CHARLES A. WOLVERTON,
House Office Building, Washington, D. C.
(Re H. R. 6180.) DEAR SIR: It has just come to my attention that a hearing on captioned bill is to be held before the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce on May 17, 1948.
My belief is that the content of the proposed act is highly objectionable to the operators of public airports generally. It would operate to deprive many air carrier airports of important operating revenue now derived from items of a concessionaire nature. This is very serious in the face of the almost universal pressure on airport managements to make their operations self-sustaining. It should also be noted that a high percentage of air carrier leases or contracts now in existence are considered by many well-qualified observers to be unduly favorable to the air lines. The proposed legislation would make the situation worse. I hope that you will see your way clear to exert your influence against this bill. Respectfully,
ARTHUR H. WEDGE, Airport Manager.
AERONAUTICS COMMISSION OF INDIANA,
Indianapolis 4, Ind., May 26, 1948. Hon. CHARLES A. WOLVERTON, Chairman, Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, United States House of Representatives,
Room 1334, House Office Building, Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. WOLVERTON: This letter is written to state briefly that I am opposed to the bill, H. R. 6180, now pending consideration before the Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee of the House of Representatives.
H. R. 6180, if enacted into law, will present a legal barrier so static in application for practicable, efficient, and acceptable business practices as may well mean the death of the much needed Federal-aid airport program.
That the airport to which the project relates will be available for public use on fair and reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination” is assured by section 11 of the act.
Part III, paragraph 550.9 (sponsor's assurance agreement) of the rules and regulations of the Federal Airport Act was adopted after months of joint deliberation and study by the CAA, the various State aeronautical agencies and representatives of the sponsors involved, who are in reality those people directly responsible for the success of the airport program. The covenants of the sponsor's assurance agreement are, in the main, considered a fair interpretation of section 11 (1) by a majority of the agencies concerned with the application of the act. They do not now so burden the municipalities in the maintenance and operation of their airports as to be confiscatory.
If the above-noted rules prove improacticable in actual test, then they may be appropriately revised. But if the proposed amendment becomes law, then the administrative pattern for the management of municipal airports established with some Federal assistance will be fixed, with virtually no control over much of the financial issues at the airport by the sponsor whose responsibility it is to support the complete installation. No readily available and flexible remedy by the Federal agency to meet changing conditions will exist. The proposed amendment clearly transgresses the scope and intent of the act.
Years of airport experience have indicated that airports can be self-supporting through wise and well-established business practices. Airports in this respect are no different than any other business utility. The underlying concept of this sphere of the American system, is that those who use and are benefited should pay their share of the bill. H. R. 6180 could, by its admitted attempt to protect a class, unfairly shift the burden.
Further, the present rules and regulations of the act provide that the sponsor may require that aviation gasoline and oil be stored in specific places and under certain conditions prescribed by the sponsor. This provision was adopted in the interest of safety and efficient airport operating practices.
There can be no compromise with such a provision designed in the interest of the public safety. H. R. 6180 would completely nullify this requirement and permit receipt and storage of fuels by each air carrier as would appear most expedient to the carrier. In an installation where both ground and aerial activity is so focused to a given point and the activity lines of operation are by necessity so compact, the merit of management control of distribution of vital materials and supplies is obvious.
The assistance rendered through the Federal Airport Act is merely some incentive to municipalities to develop a public irport in keeping with a national pattern. Most of the larger metropolitan areas, long before the Federal Airport Act, moved to provide airport facilities for their community. The burden of developing these installations was supported by the tax-paying citizenry. The great responsibility of maintaining the public airport will still be theirs regardless of whether or not Federal assistance has been made available. Because of the tremendous cost involved, airport officials have been compelled to show their people the possibilitiy of a fair return on the investment made. As mentioned before, progress in this endeavor has been made.
Many municipalities in an effort to raise funds for airport development will be compelled to issue general-purpose bonds. Such bonds must be legally approved before issuance. A test of any such bond and the rate thereon is the possibility of eventual retirement. If H. R. 6180 becomes law, airport bonds may well be placed in the same class as public swimming pools and golf courses.
The necessity of the National Airport program cannot afford the possibility of such a classification.
The terms of such a bill would unduly prevent our airport officials from using proper independent business judgment in the administration of airport financial matters by the acceptance of Federal airport assistance. There is already opposition from many municipalities because of the belief that the assurances they are compelled to make as sponsors are too great an obligation.
The principle exploited by H. R. 6180 has long since been proven untenable through experience in airport management and as disclosed by long deliberation and much consideration by a majority of the agencies responsible for the program.
I sincerely hope that your committee will find bill H. R. 6180 unfavorable in the interest of the National Airport program and the American system. Sincerely yours,
C. F. CORNISH, Director.
Civil AERONAUTICS BOARD,
Washington 25, June 1, 1948. Hon. CHARLES A. WOLVERTON, Chairman, Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR CONGRESSMAN WOLVERTON: The Civil Aeronautics Board has been requested to submit any comments it may desire to make on H. R. 6180, a bill to amend the Federal Airport Act.
The matters dealt with by the bill involve problems of airport management, maintenance, and control which primarily concern the Administrator of Civil Aeronautics. While we would not want to see any undue burden placed on air transportation by the imposition of local charges or assessments made possible by and used to implement an exclusive franchise privilege, we feel that the Administrator will be in the best position to see to it that such abuses do not
Since we believe that under existing law the Administrator has the duty and responsibility, in administering the Federal Airport Act, to prevent the imposition of onerous requirements and burdensome local charges on all classes of airport users, we do not think that further legislation is necessary or desirable.
Due to the time element involved this report has not been submitted to the Bureau of the Budget for advice as to its relation to the program of the President. Sincerely yours,
JOSEPH J. O'CONNELL, Jr., Chairman.
Telegrams were received from the following in opposition to H. R. 6180: Charles R. K. Johnston, manager, Capital Airport, Springfield, Ill. Albert A. Shuster, commissioner, Springfield Airport. Authority, Springfield, Ill. Ed Maxwell, manager, Greenwood Municipal Airport, Greenwood, Miss. Earl 0. Olson, airport manager, Duluth, Minn.
C. B. Green, manager, Draughon Miller Airport, Temple, Tex.
Rouge, La. Dewey Dovel, manager, Gregg County Airport, Longview 20, Tex. Francis T. Fox, airport manager, Worcester Municipal Airport, Worcester 20,
Mass. Harold E. Horner, Foth Porath & Horner, Inc., Green Bay 20, Wis. P. G. Powell, manager, Bluegrass Field Airport, Lexington 20, Ky. E. C. Houters, manager, Rochester Airport, Rochester 19, N.'Y. John Bate, port director, San Diego, Calif. C. A. Harrell, city manager, Norfolk, Va. Don E. Self, airport manager, El Paso, Tex. Frank Hidinger, manager, Cedar Rapids Municipal Airport, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. John A. Casey, Chicago, Ill. Frank C. Bishop, superintendent of airports, county of Napa, Napa, Calif. Fulkerson, manager, Sky Harbor Airport, Phoenix, Ariz. W. W. Pat, Kent County judge, Beaumont, Tex. Don Lathrop, American Association of Airport Executives, Evanston, Ill. Fred J. Kane, Monterey, Calif. D. 0. Langstaff, president, American Association of Airport Executives, New
Orleans, La. Twin Cities Airport, Byron Cookson, manager, St. Joseph, Mich. Claude L. Hamel, manager, Shreveport Municipal Airport, Shreveport, La. D. C. Wolfe, Chicago-Hammond Airport, Lansing, ill. W. A. Berlin, director, Hillsborough County Aviation Authority, Tampa, Fla. David E. Leigh, airport manager, Lambert St. Louis Municipal Airport, Lambert
Field, St. Louis, Mo. Herbert N. Henckell, secretary and member of board, Alexander County Airport
Authority, Cairo, Ill. Clyde E. Cole, airport manager, Flint, Mich. John Berry, commissioner of airports, city of Cleveland, Cleveland, Ohio. Dick Martin, director of aviation, Oklahoma City, Okla. A. B. Phillips, commissioner, Tifton, Ga. Glenn L. Arbogast, director of aeronautics, Long Beach, Calif. C. J. Lowen, director of aviation, Stapleton Airfield, Denver 14, Colo. Board of Aviation Commissioners of St. Joseph County, South Bend, Ind. H. A. Youts, manager, municipal airport, Shawnee, Okla. B E. Fulton airport manager, Akron, Ohio. Harry J. Buff, manager, Philip Billard Airport, Topeka, Kans. Don W. Martin, airport manager, Newcastle County Airport, Newcastle, Del. Lane Mitchell, commissioner of public works, Shreveport, La. Greenville Airport Commission, 0. O. Andrews, manager, Greenville, S. C. B. M. Doolin, manager, San Francisco Airport, San Francisco, Calif. C. W. Short, Jr., manager, Tulsa Municipal Airport, Tulsa, Okla. R. P. Selfridge, airport manager, Columbia, Mo. Robert T. Schott, Aviation Maintenance and Operations Magazine, Cleveland,
Commission, St. Paul, Minn.
FEB 2 81949