Measure S, the March 26 ballot initiative that would block the conversion of El Toro Marine Corps Air Station into a commercial airport, is being opposed by the City Council.
City Administrator Robert D'Amato advised the council to take a stand against the initiative, saying that passage of Measure S would have "a very negative effect on Orange County's economic recovery efforts."
"The loss of El Toro as an airport facility would deprive the county of over 20,000 new jobs and billions of dollars in economic growth," D'Amato said.
The council action this week was consistent with its decision in 1994 to support Measure A, which calls for a commercial airport to be established on 2,000 acres at El Toro after the military closes the Marine base by 1999. Measure S would repeal Measure A.
Opponents of a civilian airport at El Toro, many of whom live near the base, are concerned that noise and traffic generated by an airport would lower property values.