August/September Business View Magazine

156 157 plane in a cow pasture in the city and subsequently set up a flight school with an airstrip on that spot. In the late 1930s, the airstrip developed into an airfield and in 1941, City of Santa Barbara voters approved a $140,000 bond issue to pur- chase the land now occupied by SBA’s aviation side, says SBA’s Airport Director, Hazel Johns. “Shortly after they purchased the land for the airport, United Airlines, which had been flying out of the airport since 1936, entered into a 20-year ground lease with the city, and they constructed the original airline terminal,” she recounts. “Just as soon as they got that completed,World War II took off, and in 1942, the Airport became a U.S. Marine Air Corps station where they trained pilots and crews.” At the war’s conclusion, the U.S.War Department returned the Airport to the city, but the agreement contained an in- teresting caveat, and the provision proved to be a stumbling block in the eyes of Santa Barbara officials. “Most airports that have grant deeds from the War Assets Office have the provi- sion that should there be another war, they can come in and take over the airport again,” explains Johns. “The City of Santa Barbara fought that provision because they just did not want that to happen. So it took a few years after the war, to finally come to an agreement and that provision is not part of the grant deed for the Airport.” SANTA BARBARA MUNICIPAL AIRPORT