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California's airport preservation law now has some teeth. The creation of an
airport hazard will now be a criminal act.

Here are selected sections of the Government Code: 

50485. This article shall be known and may be cited as the "Airport
Approaches Zoning Law."

50485.1. As used in this article, unless the context otherwise requires:

   "Airport" means any area of land or water designed and set aside for the
landing and taking off of aircraft and utilized or to be utilized in the
interest of the public for such purposes.

   "Airport hazard" means any structure or tree or use of land which
obstructs the airspace required for the flight of aircraft in landing or
taking off at an airport or is otherwise hazardous to such landing or taking
off of aircraft.

   "Airport hazard area" means any area of land or water upon which an
airport hazard might be established if not prevented as provided in this

   "City or county" means any city, county, or city and county.

   "Person" means any individual, firm, co-partnership, corporation,
company, association, joint stock association, city or county, or district,
and includes any trustee, receiver, or assignee.

   "Structure" means any object constructed or installed by man, including,
but without limitation, buildings, towers, smokestacks, and overhead lines.

   "Tree" means any object of natural growth.  

50485.2. It is hereby found that an airport hazard endangers the lives and
property of users of the airport and of occupants of land in its vicinity
and also, if of the obstruction type, in effect reduces the size of the area
available for the landing, taking off and maneuvering of the aircraft, thus
tending to destroy or impair the utility of the airport and the public
investment therein.

Accordingly, it is hereby declared:  (a) that the creation or establishment
of an airport hazard is a public nuisance and an injury to the community
served by the airport in question; and (b) that it is therefore necessary in
the interest of the public health, public safety, and general welfare that
the creation or establishment of airport hazards be prevented by appropriate
exercise of the police power or the authority conferred by Article 2.6
(commencing with Section 21652) of Part 1 of Division 9 of the Public
Utilities Code.

  It is further declared that both the prevention of the creation or
establishment of airport hazards and the elimination, removal, alteration,
mitigation, or marking and lighting of existing airport hazards are public
purposes for which a city or county may raise and expend public funds and
acquire land or property interests therein. 

50485.12. Each VIOLATION of this article or of any regulations, orders, or
rulings promulgated or made pursuant to this article, shall constitute a

Jay C. White, General Counsel, California Pilots Association



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