In his April 17 article, “Ontario’s Spacious Skies,” staff reporter Howard Fine wrote, “A marketing campaign aimed at boosting passenger traffic at Ontario is months away.” Actually, the campaign to market ONT is already well underway.
Last year, the city of Ontario and Los Angeles World Airports were part of a delegation to Mexico to convince airline officials there of the benefits and advantages of providing air service to our city. This initiative was fueled by a marketing study, commissioned by the city and LAWA, showing Mexico and Canada as attractive international markets that could support daily air service to Ontario.
When Mexican airline officials asked for additional marketing information, the city of Ontario and LAWA quickly responded to their requests. Meanwhile, the city of Ontario produced information kits to distribute to potential Ontario International Airport users. These collateral marketing materials have since garnered marketing awards from marketing trade associations.
This year, Ontario continues to build on last year’s momentum. SH & E;, whose study last year paved the way for our marketing initiative to Mexico, is now conducting a domestic air service study to determine which cities are prime markets for flights to and from Southern California. At the same time, LAWA’s facilities planning unit is conducting a study that will better define ONT’s current customer base.
Other marketing initiatives continue as well. Cannondale Associates, which fashioned the highly successful marketing plan for the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau, is developing one for Ontario International Airport. Simultaneously, Black & Veatch is analyzing Ontario’s immense cargo capacity and tremendous growth potential.
Marketing plans are also well underway to promote and publicize the startup of Air Canada’s Ontario-to-Ontario daily air service on June 3.
Fine also wrote, “Ontario remains hard to access for the region’s highest-propensity air travelers, most of whom live on the Westside.”
News flash: Ontario International Airport’s new terminals were not built to serve the Westside. They were built to serve the San Gabriel Valley, east Orange County and the Inland Empire the fastest growing metropolitan area in the United States, an area projected to add almost 1 million people from 1993 to 2005 and reach a population of 3.8 million.
Lower office space costs, lower labor costs, as well as outstanding education, geographic and logistics advantages have all contributed to the region’s booming growth.
Some antagonists would have the city use a shotgun approach to marketing; however, we have chosen to use a targeted marketing strategy for more effective use of city funds.
MARY JANE OLHASSO
Economic Development Director
City of Ontario
Lower Taxes, Worse Schools
I read your article on Disney and its move of ABC to its Burbank campus with amusement (“Disney Pays High Price for ABC’s L.A. Move,” May 1). Specifically, I was struck by the condemnation of Eisner for moving a resistant group, in part due to the excellence of schools on the other coast.
I would like to add a point of view: I grew up in an old-line suburb of Chicago with an excellent school system. Similar to metropolitan New York, our community paid dearly in real estate taxes to support local education.
In ours and nearby suburbs, a typical home worth $500,000 paid between $9,000 and $17,000 per annum in real estate taxes.
Real estate taxes are due whether or not a resident has children in the school system. That was the affluent suburbs. Good schools within the city limits were the exception, and thus if one lived in Chicago’s Gold Coast, for example, private school tuition was almost always the standard.
In California, we have a 1 percent cap on property taxes with a 0.25 percent variance allowed. So unless we are willing to increase our real estate taxes to ensure excellent schools across the board, a comparison of schools and the costs associated with education of children is not comparable. With all due respect, let’s compare apples and apples next time.
Director, West Coast Business Development
Investor Relations Services
Standard & Poor’s
Not Such a Low-Skilled Job
I resent the fact that your story (“Inflation Is Coming to Roost in L.A.,” May 8) belittled receptionists.
Natalie Batts, branch supervisor with Manpower Temporary Services in downtown L.A., was quoted as saying, “Receptionist and data entry positions that used to pay around $8 an hour last year are now going for $11 to $12. These are essentially low-skilled administrative positions that require no other experience than being able to boot up a computer.”
It is quite obvious this person has no idea of the absolute importance of my position as a receptionist. Quite a few of us are making at least $17 to $20 per hour, and are very experienced in all areas of computer technologies. Believe it or not, we’re capable of doing spreadsheets, desktop publishing and whatever else is required all the while answering up to 425 calls per day.