...Montgomery Field Ousts FBO...

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Among the latest to feel the squeeze is Gibbs Air Service, a venerable FBO at Montgomery Field, a municipal airport in San Diego. The FBO is operated by Buzz Gibbs, whose father started the airfield back in 1937 (the field was later acquired by the city); it provides hangar space, a flight school, fuel and other services to hundreds of small-aircraft owners. Gibbs's lease expires on May 31 and the city says it won't be renewed. Officials so far haven't revealed their plans for the FBO's 24-acre parcel, other than to say they want to explore the options to maximize its income potential for the city (currently suffering a budget deficit), The Union-Tribune reported last week. Local pilots fear the city wants to drive them out with high prices, so they can cater to business jets instead. Over 500 small airplanes now live at the field. Pilots pay about $150 per month for a tie-down or $300 for a hangar. The airport's future will be discussed at a city council hearing on April 13. AOPA has contacted San Diego Mayor Dick Murphy to say that Gibbs ran one of the most respected flight schools in the area. If the city is going to take over, AOPA said, it is imperative that they continue to offer flight training.