City of Des Moines announces intent to create ‘Aviation Advisory Committee’

The City of Des Moines on Tuesday (April 25) announced that the City Council will be voting to create an Aviation Advisory Committee to review the impacts of Sea-Tac Airport on the citizens of Des Moines.

The vote will most likely take place at the council’s next scheduled meeting, set for Thursday, May 11.

On the eve of a community forum put on by the Quiet Skies Puget Sound group, the City said it has taken a number of actions to identify and address impacts in recent months, including contributing funds to support an airplane emissions study, retaining a lobbyist in Olympia to advocate on these matters, and publicly supporting state and federal legislation related to the study of airport and airplane impacts on surrounding jurisdictions.

“While the City has made attempts to publicize these actions, it has become clear that the communication utilized has not reached all of our citizens impacted by airport operations,” the city said in a statement. “With that in mind, the City Council will be voting on a motion to create an Aviation Advisory Committee. This Committee will provide their insight and perspectives and make recommendations for the City Council to consider when addressing impacts from Sea-Tac Airport operations.”

Mayor addresses Port of Seattle and FAA on airport impacts
On Tuesday, April 25, 2017, Mayor Matt Pina addressed the Port of Seattle Commission – after high-ranking representatives from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) had left the meeting – regarding the disproportionate impacts on the City of Des Moines from increased operations at Sea-Tac Airport.

“Des Moines residents are constantly challenged by noise impacts and health impacts,” Pina said. “As the implementation of NextGen by the FAA results in the narrowing of the bandwidth of aircraft overflights – departures and landings – the disproportionate impacts suffered by some of our residents’ increases. Those living directly under the overflights suffer increased noise and potential health impacts.”

Mayor Pina continued, “These impacts come from more focused aircraft operations and from increased number and frequency of aircraft operations. The NextGen impacts are attributable to the FAA. The increase in aircraft activity is the responsibility of the airport.”

In relation to the Port of Seattle’s Sustainable Airport Master Plan (SAMP) currently being developed, Mayor Pina stated the Plan, “is being developed to increase growth in operations at Sea-Tac over the next 20 years” but does not include “sufficient attention paid to noise, environmental and health impacts. The Plan provides for sustainable operations on the airfield but does little to address sustainability, in terms of airport operations as they impact the surrounding cities.”

The Mayor stated that he believes that the airport has an obligation to address these impacts and that mitigation should include:

  • Effective implementation of the home insulation program, expanding in scope and quality.
  • Financial compensation to those homeowners living under the flight paths in any situation where the value of the home is negatively impacted.
  • Port of Seattle and FAA support of ongoing studies and subsequent action on the results to ensure that the health and safety of Des Moines residents receives the priority that it deserves.

The City will continue to be proactive in addressing the airport impacts on our residents and will continue to be engaged in the Port of Seattle’s development of their Sustainable Airport Master Plan.

Based on FAA comments regarding transparency and increased community engagement made today at the Port of Seattle Commission meeting, the City will renew efforts to hold a Study Session to include the FAA and Sea-Tac airport in discussions about overflights and operational frequency issues.


One Response to “City of Des Moines announces intent to create ‘Aviation Advisory Committee’”
  1. Terry says:

    “The government intends to form a committee to look into your problems…”

Share Your Opinion

By participating in our online comment system, you are agreeing to abide by the terms of our comment policy.

...and oh, if you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!