Monday, November 14, 2011

AIRPORT: Leaders to respond to (San Bernardino) grand jury’s response


Published: 11 November 2011 06:05 AM

The back and forth between San Bernardino International Airport officials and the San Bernardino County civil grand jury isn’t over yet. Expect a response to the grand jury’s Nov. 3 response to the airport’s 500-plus page answer to the jury’s highly critical report of the airport’s operations.

That’s right. A response to the response that was a response to another response.

During the closed session of Wednesday’s meeting, the elected leaders that sit on the San Bernardino International Airport Authority discussed their intention to formally respond to the grand jury, again, but this time they’ll keep it short and concise.

Meanwhile, there was no mention of the grand jury’s letter during the regular Wednesday meeting’s open session. The letter was made public a day before and accused airport officials of being misleading and making unsubstantiated claims that there were errors in the original jury report, a rare action by a grand jury.

The original report released June 30 was the culmination of a two-year investigation that started in 2009. The jury had hired San Francisco firm Harvey M. Rose Associates for $75,840 to conduct an audit of the airport’s operations and management.

The airport’s former executive director, Donald L. Rogers, deferred comment to the authority’s current staff. The authority’s assistant executive director Mike Burrows didn’t return calls seeking comment the day the letter was released. Neither did San Bernardino Mayor Patrick Morris and San Bernardino County Supervisor Josie Gonzales who both sit on the authority’s board. Morris is president and Gonzales is a member.

When asked about the letter after Wednesday’s meeting, board member and Colton Councilman Vincent Yzaguirre said he had actually handwritten his thoughts on the subject on the back of one of the pages in the agenda. He wrote:

“I personally and respectfully appreciate the sincere effort by (the) grand jury to provide a meaningful and helpful critique of this airport. One that we can all humbly find value in (in) the form of recommendations that will help us become more efficient, more effective and more productive in our efforts to develop this base for the future benefit of this region. I personally thank the grand jury for their collective input and service to our communities.”


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