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LAKEWAY AIRPARK FACTS

115 Flying Scot St. Lakeway TX 78734

Latest Status: May 2022

POSTED May 2022.

The City of Lakeway agreed to accept volunteer applications for seven citizens to serve on a committee to study the AV Zoning area and recommend updates to ZAPCO.

Volunteers were chosen, one each, by each city council member, including the Mayor.

The committee is made up of these council approved members:

Ron Massa, nominated by Mayor Tom Kilgore

Matt Sherman, nominated by Councilmember and Mayor Pro Tem Louis Mastrangelo

William Cotton, nominated by Councilmember Laurie Higgenbotham

Chris Lee, nominated by Councilmember Sanjeev Kumar

Ed LeBlanc, nominated by Councilmember Steve Smith

JoAnn Anderson, nominated by Councilmember Keith Trecker

Randy Adams, nominated by Councilmember Randy Adams

A Statement from the President of the Board, Lakeway Airpark

POSTED February 2022. It is being falsely claimed by some that Lakeway Airpark has denied that there has been flight instruction and an aircraft club operation occurring at the Lakeway Airpark. The Airpark has never denied that these activities have and do occur. Flight Instruction and club operations have occurred at that airpark and these are business activities engaged in by private citizens.

Aircraft club operations allow citizens to obtain the use of aircraft but they do not “rent” them. Arguing about semantics misses the point. The Lakeway Airpark is not financially associated with either of these activities. The regulatory body responsible for regulating these operations is the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The FAA regulations are written to ensure the safety of these activities. Lakeway Airpark does not have the authority to regulate these activities nor does the Airpark believe they should be regulated by the city.  These activities are already properly addressed by the FAA. Having access to club aircraft provides a way for Lakeway pilot citizens who do not own an aircraft to experience the joys and benefits of aviation.

Having access to flight instruction increases flight safety.

So how did we get here? In 2010 there was concern that scheduled airline operations might be coming to Lakeway Airpark. In response the Aviation District Zoning ordinance was revised in 2010. Rather than directly address the issue by the simple statement that “FAA Part 121 operations are not allowed”, the ordinance tried to define these operations using the term “commercial operations”. This ambiguous wording caused confusion over what was and was not allowed. The 2010 ordinance was so flawed the city has termed it “not enforceable”. And although the Airpark has been operating just fine over the last 12 years with this non enforceable ordinance in place, the city has felt the need to change it. A change to fix the problems associated with the ordinance would be welcome by the Airpark.

The Airpark is concerned that the present attempt to modify the Aviation District Zoning regulation will result in a repeat of the same problems. The current attempts to push through a proposal without taking the time to make sure it is properly crafted to address the needs of all stakeholders is sure to result in history being repeated. Some seem to feel this issue is a battle to be won with a strict timeline to be met. It is not. It is a problem to be solved. To fix this issue requires problem solvers, not warriors. This problem is best solved by a working group of problem solvers who represent the interest of the stakeholders and can collaborate to rationally address the issues.

Mike Torbett
President – Lakeway Airpark Inc.

What Does the Airpark Want?

1. To have a positive, engaged, cooperative relationship with Lakeway Citizens, the City of Lakeway and our membership and guests. The Airpark has served this community since 1962 and we hope for much longer.

2. If we are faced with being operationally and financially destroyed by government overreach, then we are asking for:

  • The City to articulate WHAT urgent problem they are trying to solve for and the SIZE of that problem. So far we've shown the Airpark is much safer than U.S. average and much quieter and less busy than similar airports in Texas. Info HERE and also HERE.

  • The courtesy of working sessions with city staff and Airpark representatives. The Mayor finally agreed to form a working group but then nominated himself to be in this group, despite his biased, aggressive, demanding, unilateral zoning proposals to date.

  • Engagement with City Council members to inform, tour the Airpark, Q&A.

HISTORY: WHAT DID THE CITY DO?

It seems that at the behest of two individuals* the City of Lakeway, at the Direction of Mayor Kilgore, and without contacting or engaging the Airpark, re-wrote the AV district zoning ordinance in a way that would defund the Airpark’s ability to maintain itself, and buried it on page 109 of a 125 page agenda item posted on Dec 30th 2021 and scheduled for ZAPCO** on Jan 5th, 2022.  The Airpark accidentally learned about it 36 hours before the ZAPCO meeting. Since then, the Mayor has been all over social media making additional false and inaccurate claims without evidence. At one point we received an email from the Mayor telling us that we don't need to educate him. He seems to be informed by some source with nefarious intentions and totally dismissive of having us help explain to him the nuances and details of how his zoning changes would impact the broader Lakeway community and our Airpark community. It is very unfortunate and totally avoidable.

Due to Airpark homeowners not being properly notified, ZAPCO was instructed to remove the item from their agenda, twice (as of Mid Feb 2022). It is now rescheduled for ZAPCO on March 3rd.

City Staff, without notifying us or working with us or reaching out to us in any way, revised (again) their zoning recommendations. They have since revised it again, 6 times, unilaterally.

We are not-for-profit, 215% fewer accidents than U.S. average (see: www.3R9.org/airpark-safety for details, sources and math) and very quite (see: www.3R9.org/airpark-stats).