Airport to Add Flight Slots

Kirt Ramirez

The Long Beach Airport will make three additional flight slots available to airplane carriers.

The move comes after a study found the airport operated well below the Long Beach Municipal Code noise ordinance requirements and three additional slots could be added as a result.

“Each year, the airport is required by the noise ordinance to determine the status of the air carrier noise budget and whether air carrier flights should be added or removed to ensure compliance with the noise budgets,” wrote Long Beach Airport Director Cynthia Guidry in a letter to the City Council.

“Based on the findings of this year’s analysis, staff has determined that three supplemental air carrier flight slots are required to be allocated,” she added.

The analyses performed by independent firms for noise year Oct. 1, 2018 through Sept. 30, 2019 indicated “the airport operated below the air carrier noise budget at remote monitoring terminal (RMT) 9 and RMT 10,” the letter states.

Fifty air carrier slots have been allocated at the airport with 48 being passenger and two, cargo. Forty-one of the slots are permanent air carrier slots and nine are supplemental air carrier slots. Altogether, the air carriers operated on average 44.1 flights per day during the reporting period, according to the letter.

A table showing the air carrier noise budget performance for Oct. 1, 2018 through September 30, 2019 indicates RMT 9 was allowed 70.7 budget units but only used 47.7. RMT 10 was permitted 84.6 but used 69.8.

“The air carriers were well below their allowable budget for the reporting period at RMT 9 and RMT 10,” Guidry wrote. “If the average number of air carrier flights per day had been closer to the maximum allowed, the respective noise budgets also would have been closer to the maximum allowed, but still below the budget by a sufficient margin to allow additional flight slots beyond the 50 flight slots currently permitted.”

Guidry said the research firms involved were asked how many flight slots could be added, the letter indicates.

“Based on the dictates of the noise ordinance and the relevant noise analyses, the airport director has determined that three supplemental flight slots, consistent with the requirements of LBCM Section 16.43.060(E), are required to be made available to air carrier operators for possible allocation and that the allocation of these supplemental slots will not lead the air carriers as a group to exceed the noise levels established by Section 16.43.030(C), Guidry wrote.

Three airlines on a waiting list would be notified of the available flight slots within a month of the Dec. 11 letter and must submit a request in writing. Hawaiian Airlines is first on the list, followed by Delta Air Lines and then Southwest Airlines.

“Flight slots required to be awarded pursuant to Section 16.43.060(E) shall be awarded for a period of one year,” Guidry wrote.

American Airlines currently has three permanent slots at the Airport. Delta has six permanent and two supplemental. Hawaiian Airlines has one permanent. Jet Blue has 24 permanent slots. Southwest has five permanent and seven supplemental. And FedEx and UPS each have one permanent slot, explained Long Beach Airport Public Affairs Specialist Cassie Chauvel.



The analyses performed by independent firms for noise year Oct. 1, 2018 through Sept. 30, 2019 indicated “the airport operated below the air carrier noise budget at remote monitoring terminal (RMT) 9 and RMT 10."

The article refers to a table of remote monitoring terminals. Were the other 8 RMTs operated below the noise budget also, or where RMT 9 and RMT 10 cherry picked from the table?

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