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Frequently Asked Questions

John Wayne Airport Settlement Agreement

Q.What is the Settlement Agreement?

A.The 1985 "Settlement Agreement" formalized consensus reached between the County of Orange, the City of Newport Beach and two community groups on the nature and extent of facility and operational improvements that could be implemented at John Wayne Airport (JWA).

Q.Who are the signatories to the Settlement Agreement?

A.The County of Orange, the City of Newport Beach, the Airport Working Group (AWG) and Stop Polluting Our Newport (SPON) are the four signatories.

Q.When does the Settlement Agreement expire?

A.The original Settlement Agreement was scheduled to expire on December 31, 2005. In 2003, the original four signatories approved a series of amendments to the Settlement Agreement that extended the agreement through December 31, 2015. This amendment allowed for additional facilities and operational capacity and continued to provide environmental protections for the local community.

Q.What kinds of limitations are defined in the Settlement Agreement?

A.There are six principal restrictions in the Settlement Agreement: (1) term of the agreement; (2) curfew; (3) the annual passenger limit, referred to as the “Million Annual Passenger Cap” or “MAP Cap”; (4) the number of Class A Average Daily Departures (ADDs) allocated for passenger service; (5) the number of Class A Average Daily Departures (ADDs) allocated for all-cargo service; and (6) the number of passenger loading bridges.

Q.Why is the curfew treated differently than other limitations?

A.The curfew at JWA was originally implemented through lease agreements between the County and scheduled commercial operators using the Airport. In December 1971, the Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution establishing a curfew. The current curfew was established in the County’s General Aviation Noise Ordinance (GANO). While the curfew was created and has its legal basis in a County ordinance, it is also referenced in the 1985 Settlement Agreement. Under the Settlement Agreement, the County was obligated to maintain the curfew as established in 1985. The 2003 amendment to the Settlement Agreement continued the County’s obligation to maintain and enforce the curfew through 2020.

Q.What is the current status of the Settlement Agreement amendment process?

A.A Draft Environmental Impact Report (Draft EIR) was issued on May 23, 2014. The Draft EIR is intended to address potential impacts associated with the proposed modification and extension of the Settlement Agreement.

Q.Is the Draft Environmental Impact Report Available to the Public?

A.The Draft EIR and technical appendices are available for review between the hours of 8:00 am and 5:00 pm at the John Wayne Airport Administrative office, located at 3160 Airway Avenue in Costa Mesa and at the City of Newport Beach Planning Department located at 100 Civic Center Drive in Newport Beach. Please call 24 hours in advance to view the Draft EIR at the Airport (949.252.5171) or the City of Newport Beach (949.644.3200).

The documents are also available online here and at the following public libraries:

Costa Mesa/Donald Dugan
1855 Park Avenue
Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Costa Mesa/Mesa Verde
2969 Mesa Verde Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

El Modena
380 South Hewes Street
Orange, CA 92869

Irvine/Heritage Park
14361 Yale Avenue
Irvine, CA 92604

Irvine/University Park
4512 Sandburg Way
Irvine, CA 92612

Laguna Beach
363 Glenneyre Street
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Mariners Library
1300 Irvine Ave
Newport Beach, CA 92660

Newport Beach
1000 Avocado Avenue
Newport Beach, CA 92660

407 East Chapman Avenue
Orange, CA 92866

Santa Ana
26 Civic Center Plaza
Santa Ana, CA 92701

345 East Main Street
Tustin, CA 92780

Villa Park Library
17865 Santiago Blvd.
Villa Park, CA 92861

Q.Can the public provide input on the Draft EIR?

A.Yes. Interested parties may submit written comments on the Draft EIR no later than 5:00 pm on July 8, 2014, via e-mail to DEIR617@ocair.com or through the U.S. Mail addressed to Ms. Lea Choum, John Wayne Airport, 3160 Airway Avenue, Costa Mesa, CA, 92626.

Members of the public may also provide oral or written comments at one of two County-sponsored public meetings. The purpose of these meetings is to provide information about the structure and content of the Draft EIR and to explain the process by which the public can access the document and provide input to the County of Orange. The first meeting, hosted by Supervisor Todd Spitzer, will be held on May 28, 2014 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at Hewes Middle School (13232 Hewes Avenue, North Tustin). The second meeting, hosted by Supervisor John Moorlach, will be held on May 29, 2014 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at JWA’s Administrative Offices (3160 Airway Avenue, Costa Mesa).

Q.Does the FAA have to approve an amendment?

A.No. The County will, however, request a formal written opinion letter from the FAA regarding the project and its compliance with the Airport Noise and Capacity Act (ANCA) and FAA grant assurances.

Q.Do the airlines have to approve an amendment?

A.No. However, the airlines are important stakeholders in this matter and may provide input during the public comment period.

Q.When will the final decision be made?

A.The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to consider the proposed amendments to the Settlement Agreement and the Draft EIR in late summer 2014.

Before any Project can be implemented, all signatories will need to approve the modifications of the Settlement Agreement provisions, and the federal court will need to review and approve any stipulation reflecting the approved amendments filed by the signatories.