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Great Park of Irvine
Irvine, California

   Chronology of Development of Great Park at El Toro


From the volunteer-run El Toro Info Site

Here are a few of the stories that made our website headlines, which we continue to update daily:

JANUARY - After a seesaw court battle over the legality of Measure V, Orange County voters win the right to elect Todd Spitzer's replacement on the Board of Supervisors. Bill Campbell wins the special election. With Campbell, Tom Wilson and Chris Norby, El Toro opponents have a 3-2 majority on the board for the first time.

FEBRUARY - The Board of Supervisors rescinds previous County plans for an airport at El Toro.

MARCH - The Board votes, 3-2, to approve a pre-annexation tax-sharing agreement with Irvine giving the County 82 percent of the revenue from El Toro. Supervisors Smith and Silva vote "No".

APRIL - Supervisors vote to withdraw Orange County from the Orange County Regional Airport Authority, OCRAA, and the Southern California Regional Airport Authority, SCRAA.

JUNE - A secret attempt by Los Angeles to takeover El Toro, and run it in conjunction with LAX, is exposed. State Senator Ken Murray introduces a bill in the legislature backing the plan. Supervisors Smith and Silva write to Transportation Secretary Mineta, endorsing the attempt. The Navy and FAA say "No".

In the resultant controversy, the Board dumps Smith as O.C.'s representative to the Southern California Association of Governments, SCAG.

The Newport Beach based Airport Working Group (AWG) sues to try to block Irvine annexation of the former base.

JULY - The Board votes, 3-2 to rescinds El Toro-related avigation easements.

SEPTEMBER - Controversy mounts over LA Mayor Hahn's $9 billion plan to remodel LAX, reduce the number of gates to restrict its capacity, and to build a remote passenger check in facility.

The Great Park Corporation forms to manage the park development.

OCTOBER - The Southern California Association of Governments, SCAG, releases its draft 2004 regional transportation plan. El Toro airport is dropped from the plan.

NOVEMBER - The Airport Working Group settles its lawsuit against the Department of Defense without achieving its goal of delaying the Navy's sale of the base.

The Local Agency Formation Commission, LAFCO, approves Irvine's annexation of El Toro.

DECEMBER - The AWG stalls the annexation into January 2004.



Our predictions for 2003 came pretty close.


Despite AWG stalling tactics, Irvine's annexation of the base will become official in January and the Navy's land auction will follow. Completion of the sale, transfer of title, and demolition of the runways will drag on longer than originally expected.

El Toro advocates will try to use the additional time to resurrect their plans. Diehards from Orange County and Los Angeles will lobby Sacramento and Washington for an El Toro airport under Los Angeles control. When they fail, THE GAME FINALLY WILL BE OVER.

Until then, we will have plenty of El Toro news to report. Stay tuned.

Details on the above stories can be accessed in the website's seven-years of archived news.

*** POSTED JANUARY 6, 2004 ***


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