|LAX update at WVRC on May 1st
HENRIETTA LIAN started us off with the Pledge. We then had a triumvirate
(that means three) who led us through The Battle Hymn of the Republic.
PP JIM DOWNIE played his harmonica, JACK HARRIS was at the keyboard, and
PP STEVE DAY led the procession - it was good. MYRON TAYLOR came forward
with an Invocation, pointing out that he was subbing for someone else,
and of course MYRON did his usual excellent job. He thanked God for the
gift of life, reminding us that our being here at all showed that we had
a purpose, and it was up to us to be aware and carry out whatever good
we can do. He asked for wisdom for our leaders, and concluded by being
thankful for being a Rotarian, plus reminding everyone that living up to
the standard of a Rotarian was important.
There were no visiting Rotarians. SALLY BRANT introduced Carl Morgan,
who is an associate of our Speaker, Jim Ritchie. I asked the visiting
firemen from Station 37 to stand, and they were given a nice round of
applause. Joining me at the Head Table were Firefighter Larry Fuller and
Captain Frank Lima. I introduced Larry Fuller as our Firefighter of the
Year, pointing out that he was a 22-year veteran of the Fire Department,
serving the last nine years in the Westwood area. He has produced
several public safety programs locally, lives in Ventura, and puts in a
lot of his off duty time as a volunteer for the local Search and Rescue
team. He is a scuba instructor, and has designed a "dunker" program,
which prepares the Team for the occasional dip into the ocean which can
Larry is married to Roberta, they have twin 10-year old boys
and an 8-year old daughter - in addition to his professional work, he is
an example to all of us of what volunteering is all about. We presented
him with a Paul Harris Fellowship, including the certificate and
medallion, plus a Plaque naming him the firefighter of the year in
Larry spoke briefly, pointing out that he was part of a team - and
that every firefighter present deserved the award as much as he did.
Captain Lima then added his comments, emphasizing the many ways in which
Firefighter Fuller was a role model for all the personnel at Fire
DON PARK was recognized as having joined WVRC exactly THIRTY FIVE years
ago today. This was significant enough to earn Don a hundred buck fine!
(There's no escaping these 'rewards', apparently). PP GEORGE DEA is
recuperating from his recent surgery - give him a call, please. LENNY
FRIEDMAN checked into St. Johns, and may be getting a new pacemaker
installed. The upcoming District Training Breakfast for all incoming
officers and Board Members is set for Saturday, May 17th, starting at
0700 at the LAX Marriott - it ends with lunch, and please notify KEN
LEVER whether you can be there or not. YOE has attended several of
these, and they are definitely worthwhile.
RUDY ALVAREZ was off for the District Conference at Pechanga, and he
and his Group Study Exchange Team will leave right afterward for their
month in Italy. Since he is there anyway, RUDY will be staying an extra
month in Europe, so we will see him next in JULY! But before he could
escape, PP DAVE WHITEHEAD caught him with a series of slides showing his
new RED CHEVY CORVETTE. Dave pointed out that it sits very close to the
ground - clearance is six inches, and since the body is fiberglass, that
helps it to move right along.. RUDY is reputed to have applied for
several personalized License Plates, all of which have been rejected so
far. This machine has a lot of zip - RUDY admitted to taking it up to
142 mph - and these things usually cost money, so the magic fine was
announced at $142.00!
SALLY BRANT introduced our Speaker, Jim Richie, the Deputy Executive
Director of Strategic Planning and Development at all four of Los
Angeles's World Airports. He has had 32 years of aviation management
experience, as General Manager of Mercury Air Center at LAX, prior to
that in planning the closure of El Toro and Naval air stations at Camp
Pendleton and Miramar. He has several Masters degrees, including systems
Management at USC, National Security and Strategic Studies for the Naval
War College, and International Relations from Salve Regina College in
Newport, RI. He is a FAA Certified Flight Instructor, and holds an
Airline Transport Pilot Rating. He lives in Mission Viejo with his wife
and two daughters.
Mr Ritchie began by complimenting our visiting Firefighters on the
excellent - and dangerous - work they perform so well. His report
reflects Mayor Jim Hahn's ideas and the plans will be presented to the
City Council later this year for LAX and Van Nuys.
His slides were quite helpful in understanding a complex subject. 9/11
and other related incidents have reduced air travel considerably in the
near term. In 2000, there were 67 million passengers flying into the Los
Angeles area. Last year the figure was 56 million - a major decline. By
2020, they are forecasting an additional 80 million annual passengers,
so expansion is a pressing problem. LAX must be modernized to compete
with the new Asian Pacific Airports.
LAX was last changed in 1984 - a long time ago, considering the
continual increase in passengers. A major redesign of the taxiways at
LAX is now actively underway. Ontario now handles 6.5 million, and will
expand to handle 30. This will provide up to 60,000 jobs in the Ontario
area. Palmdale was bought in 1974, and has 17,000 acres - but it
is tough to get there. Long Beach is not a player, since they have a cap
on how many flights they can accept. Burbank also has problems, but must
be expanded somehow.
Q&A: LEE DUNAYER - Growth at Burbank needs a rapid transit system,
right? We are certainly supportive of this need, and Magnetic Resolution
Trains may help in the future. Would airlines find that
attractive? We will MAKE it attractive!
SEAN MCMILLAN - What about Security at LAX? We will install a People
Mover, which will only add four minutes to the time to get to the
BILL EDWARDS - What are the plans for Van Nuys? A People Mover here
would help, but Van Nuys probably won't be planned as a commercial
RAY ZICKFELD - Why don't the new train lines go to LAX? The
Green Line is not compatible with LAX electronics since it would upset
navigational aids. This is a prime example of dueling bureaucracies,
JACK HARRIS - Will American Airlines survive? I hope they make it -
the profitable carriers now are Southwest, Jet Blue, and Alaska.
ELLIOTT TURNER - Realistically, what can we do to improve security?
Screening and profiling will improve, but we can't go too far.
RALPH BEASOM - Is the 405 freeway a problem with LAX expansion? Not
really, since the 405 only provides 7% of freeway congestion.
LILLIAN KLIEWER - Who will pay for all this? Airports are profitable,
and they generate sufficient income.
BURLEIGH ARNOLD - What happened to the plan to extend runways into
the Pacific? This is a very tough environmental problem, and gets
involved with the Coastal Commission.
PP HOWIE HENKES - What is the reliability record for People Movers?
They are designed with backups.
PP JIM DOWNIE - Now we land closest to the community - will central
taxiway help? Yes.
PP STEVE DAY - Will Nelson field be touched? No.
And that covers it - thanks for all your information, Bill Ritchie.
YOE, Ernie Wolfe