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Is Long Beach airport for sale?

January 3, 2009 |  5:36 pm

There is something intriguing going on at Long Beach City Hall over potentially big plans for the city's airport. Faced with a deficit, the City Council on Monday will consider what City Manager Pat West would describe only as "some lease opportunities." The closed-session item on the council's itinerary mentions a "lease or acquisition" of the airport. One councilwoman says she worries that the city is trying to sell the airport to investors. More from the Press-Telegram:

West said Friday that the city had been contacted by a slew of financial companies interested in an airport deal, including notable potential investors such as Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley, according to the meeting agenda. When asked whether the airport's sale is on the table, West said only that the meeting is about "leasing opportunities," but wouldn't explicitly say that it isn't about selling the airport. City officials aren't allowed to discuss the details of closed session items. "We have an opportunity to investigate some lease opportunities at the airport," West said. "We want to gauge the City Council's interest before we spend any time looking at these opportunities."

LB Report has more on possible "privatization" of the airport -- and urges the city to hold the discussion in public.

-- Shelby Grad