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Airport to raise parking rates as it gears up for legal battle

Parking rates will rise by $1 at Bob Hope Airport next year as officials beef up for what is expected to be a long and costly legal battle with Lockheed Martin over who should pay for cleaning polluted groundwater beneath the airfield.

In pitching the fee increase to the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority on Monday, executive director Dan Feger criticized Lockheed Martin Corp. and the Environmental Protection Agency for trying peg some of the clean up to the airport, arguing the underground contamination was left behind by decades of military aircraft manufacturing.

In addition to a lawsuit against Lockheed over the clean-up costs, Feger said he is asking California senators in Washington D.C. to change the law that places the airport on the hook for part of an estimated $108-million tab.

To prevent polluters from escaping liability, the federal law allows the government to cast a wide net in holding property owners responsible for clean-up costs.


“This is a most regrettable situation, and we think it’s totally unfair of the EPA to put the airport, the airlines and the traveling public in this position,” Feger said before the authority unanimously approved the increase.

Beginning Feb. 1, short-term daily parking rates will be $31 a day, long-term rates will be at $10 to $12, and the valet rate will be $21 a day.

The change will push the short-term rate at Bob Hope Airport slightly higher than at Los Angeles International Airport, which is currently the most expensive in the region, according to the airport authority.

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