Topanga residents who are concerned about changes to the air traffic route over the Santa Monica Mountains are encouraged to contact U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris.
The U.S. Senate is expected to consider the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Bill S-1405 before a September 30th deadline. The House already passed H.R. 4, the FAA Reauthorization Act, in late April.
“FAA’s implementation of NextGen in the SoCal Metroplex area has created an intense concentration of flight paths at lowered altitudes directly over our homes and surrounding parklands,” local activist Alicia Gonzalez told the Messenger Mountain News. Gonzales is asking all residents to reach out their elected officials to ask them to ensure the legislation contains language to protect communities like Topanga from aviation noise and emissions.
“Senators Elizabeth Warren and Joe Markey from Massachussets and Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen from Maryland have proposed amendments that are of particular interest to us,” Gonzalez wrote.
The amendments include a key provision requiring a study on the health impacts of air traffic noise and pollution.
“Senators Feinstein and Harris have sent representatives to meetings with the Regional Director of the FAA and TRACON, requested official documents from the FAA, and made numerous inquiries into the operations,” Gonzalez wrote. “They are sympathetic to our plight. Let them know we need them to continue to represent us effectively on this important matter.”
Gonzalez explained that phone calls are the best way to reach out to Feinstein and Harris. She offers a sample phone script:
My name is ____________________. I live in [neighborhood and zip code] and am a constituent of Senator Feinstein / Harris. I am calling to urge the senator to use the upcoming vote on Senate Bill 1405 as an opportunity to hold the FAA accountable for the detrimental impacts of NextGen on my community and many other communities throughout the country. Please, support the amendments proposed by Senators Warren and Markey and Senators Cardin and Van Hollen. Thank you.
Gonzales also recommends following up by email, and provides a sample letter:
Subject: FAA Reauthorization Bill, S-1405
I urgently request your support of legislation containing language to protect communities impacted by aviation noise and emissions, as proposed by Senators Cardin and Van Hollen. The current aviation situation is detrimental to our physical health, quality of life, and our property values. In addition, the amendment proposed by Senators Warren and Markey would authorize a much-needed independent study by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to examine the health impacts we are experiencing. The FAA cannot be allowed to continue to minimize the real consequences of their recent actions. Your support is indispensable and greatly appreciated.
The full text of the bill can be accessed at https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/2422/text
Contact information for California’s U.S. Senators:
331 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (310) 914-7300 or (202) 224-3841
112 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510
Phone: (213) 894-5000 or (202) 224-3553