Tag Archives: Air Combat

Air Combat Planes

Fullerton Loses Another $1.2Million+ of Your Money to Incompetence

No, not against us… yet. Or against the Rock Wagner family for that Kathryn Hamel created wrongful death nonsense. You know the one, that’s the case that led to Hamel “resigning” and the city illegally dropping their sustained findings against her. Yeah, that’s gonna be a pricey lawsuit as well.

But no, this particular million dollar lawsuit stems from the Fullerton Airport Manager, Brendan O’Reilly, lying about when a hangar contract with former tenant Air Combat ended to illegally take said hangar from them to give it to the City Council favored/connected event company Hangar 21.

Air Combat Contract Lies

You have to wonder who was pulling O’Rielly’s strings to make his lie so often…

The ruling was aired live on Wednesday (no archived footage is available), and it hasn’t been released in writing yet, but for those who watched live were able to witness the jury side with Air Combat. The jury agreed that the City lied about the start/end date of Air Combat’s contract and awarded Air Combat $1.2Million in damages. That number will move around a bit as legal fees and other costs are calculated by the judge but it’s a huge slap in the face for Fullerton taxpayers and another black eye for CIty Hall / City Council.

Chalk one more loss up to Jones & Mayer and our incompetent City Staff. I hope you enjoy continually paying out for this nonsense because more is coming (see above).

It was an obvious case of corruption/incompetence at all levels of City Hall & Council that allowed this to happen and nobody, I repeat nobody, at City Hall is being held accountable for this million dollar loss that was entirely avoidable. And THAT dear Friends is the real reason the City wants to raise your taxes with Measure S – because being responsible with your tax dollars is just too darn hard.

Hanger 21 is Still Illegally Operating at the Airport

Back in 2017 the city of Fullerton kicked Air Combat USA out of the airport and after a legally questionable bid process the city leased the hanger to a company called Hanger 21. We covered this briefly HERE and HERE.

Here’s some of the backstory from the City Manager himself:

Domer Hanger 21 PL

“The problem is that regardless of the lease term, it is the use that is non-conforming.  However, what is the remedy for a non-conforming use?  Cessation of the use, which could happen if the PL amendment is not approved or the lease is not.”

Realizing that the city had approved a bid for a business that wasn’t legally allowed to operate, the city swung into action to fix the problem. The remedy was for Fullerton’s City Council to chang the municipal code in an effort to make Hanger 21’s then-illegal use conform to local law.

And because this is Fullerton – they failed spectacularly.

On December 05, 2017 the city council approved Hanger 21’s lease AND then on March 20, 2018 they changed the zoning at the airport.

PL Zone Change 2018

“H. Other similar public facilities, commercial amenities, and special events on City-owned property when in conformance with the purpose of this zone and approved by the City Council.”

Read that and then think about the timeline because the city didn’t and hasn’t. I’ll point out the obvious problem:

“and approved by the City Council”.

The City Council cannot legally be said to have approved Hangar 21’s usage since they haven’t visited the issue since the municipal zoning change. This is a cart before the horse problem with the council just assuming that they’ve de facto approved Hangar 21’s lease and use through the zone change but that’s an ex post facto problem and is quite an illegal interpretation.

Score another blunder for Jones and Mayer.

Here we sit a year and four months later and the council has YET to fix this problem.

This is another case of city staff, consultants, attorneys and the city council being incompetent and hoping nobody catches on which of course has led to the city being sued.

PlaneCrash Fullerton

Fullerton Lies to Fight Transparency – Airport Edition

I’m not sure why Fullerton is so dedicated to being lying liars telling lies to just to tell them but that’s how they do.

Recently somebody put in a Public Records Request to find out if the City of Fullerton was in violation of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Grant Rules and risking a financial headache.

This all stems from Hanger 21 and their non-aeronautical use holding parties instead of making sure the space in question is used for actual aeronautical use as required by the FAA.

Public Records Request number 19-272 asked, and I quote;

“Please provide me with a list of non-aeronautical and aeronautical hangars at the Fullerton Airport.”

The response from the city was;

No Records Available

“The City does not maintain a list, and the Public Records Act does not require the City to create records in response to a request.”

Oh really.

Weird. This email from Airport Manager Brendan O’Reilly seems to say otherwise.

Non-Aero Uses at Airport

“Here’s what I wrote up for the eviction of the twelve non-aero tenants, along with the letter I sent out last February as a warning.”

So there’s a list of non-aeronautical tenants when the city needs it but not one when the city is required to disclose it? It sure seems that Brendan O’Reilly is making things up at his convenience to suit his immediate needs.

Oh Lying Liars and the Lies they tell.

This isn’t the first time that O’Reilly has been caught lying. He previously lied to the city about the airport having a waiver for non-aeronautical uses which the city doesn’t have. He got away with it because our council and staff are lazy, incompetent or both.

In the end, these lying liars who lie are going to cost you, the taxpayers, millions.

It’ll cost you when AirCombat wins their lawsuit because the city is illegally renting an aeronautical facility to a non-aeronautical user at below market rates AND the city purposely disqualified two applicants (including AirCombat) from the lease because Hanger 21 could pay more. BUT we rented to H21 at below market rate (if it wasn’t on an airport) because they could pay more than the tenants who would actually use the space for aeronautical uses which the city is legally required to prioritize.

Then it’ll cost you once more when Hangar 21 sues the city for estoppel for damages they incurred after the Feds force H21’s eviction from the property due to an illegal lease.

Oh. And don’t forget that the airport wasn’t even zoned to allow for Hanger21’s business when they were approved. Again, per Airport Manager O’Reilly:

Hanger21 PL Zoning

“After our EDAT meeting on October 5, it seems that we won’t be able to get CC approval for the item because of the PL Zoning issue.”

This is the bullshit Fullerton’s Council tolerates. This is the bullshit they will continue to tolerate because they don’t know any better. This is the bullshit we get to pay for because our City Council is too spineless to ask a single pointed question, let alone demand compliance with our own laws.

It isn’t going to get better until voters hold these nitwits accountable and make them responsible for their actions. Good luck getting that to happen.