Pilots Win Lawsuit Against City of Glendale Arizona
March 28, 2016 - After a four and a half (4 1/2) year dispute with the City of Glendale Arizona, the Glendale Airport Pilots Association (GAPA) has won a Motion for Summary Judgment against the city, stopping the city’s attempts to dictate the usage of privately owned hangar spaces on the airport. According to Richard Goldman, President of GAPA, it has been the city’s view that they can change the lease agreement at any time they wish by revising the airport Rules and Regulations, not to mention the city’s attempts to use the FAA grant assurance program as leverage for their attempts to enforce restrictions on hangar uses. Goldman further states, “We won the Motion for Summary Judgment where the city acquiesced and thus abandoned the right to enforce rules that were actually in place, but never enforced for over a decade. We won the judgment, but there are many more issues still out there unsettled. We are not through with them yet.”
In April of 2014, approximately 20 pilots and hangar owners filed a lawsuit in the name of Glendale Airport Pilots Association (GAPA) against the City of Glendale alleging, among other things, breach of contract, broken promises, loss of property values, and state and federal constitutional issues. The suit was filed in Maricopa County Superior Court. Early on the FAA, through Mr. Kevin Willis in Washington DC and Mr. Tony Garcia in Los Angeles, attempted to support the city in their efforts to dictate hangar usage by assuming authority they did not have. When the lawsuit was filed, the FAA scattered for the high weeds. Due to the FAA and the city administration, the airport has been damaged both in property values and airport activities, and will probably take several years to fully recover.
Will GAPA continue to exist now that the lawsuit appears to be over? Goldman replied, “GAPA is a non-profit organization on the airport created to defend all pilots and hangar owners from government intrusion, and yes, GAPA will remain active as long as it is needed.”