...Closure Notice Not Supplied...

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Soon after the excavators had done their work, the FAA acknowledged that Daley had the legal right to close the airport. However, federal law requires that an airport owner give at least 90 days of notice. In an emergency, or for national security concerns, only 30 days of notice is required if the airport has a published instrument approach, which Meigs had. Chicago notified the FAA of Meigs' closure the day after the runway was wrecked. If the FAA finds Chicago guilty, it can fine the city $1,100 per day for anywhere from two to 90 days of absent notice. We haven't seen any figures on the cost of wrecking the runway but the resulting fine may not even be as much as that. Still, the FAA thinks the investigation and potential penalty will be a deterrent. FAA spokesman Tony Molinaro said the investigation "sends a message to the city and any other airport sponsors that we do take a closing like this very seriously." As a result of the Meigs escapade, Congress has enacted a law that would increase fines for such abrupt closures to $10,000 a day.