Ontario

San Bernardino County school districts extend school closures through May 1

In a unified effort to protect the health of students, staff and school communities, San Bernardino County Superintendent Ted Alejandre and school district superintendents countywide, in collaboration with the County Department of Public Health, made the collective decision to extend public school closures at least through May 1. “Because of the increasing spread of the novel coronavirus in our region and across the state, we are taking a proactive and aggressive approach to maintain the health, safety and well-being of our schools and communities,” County Superintendent Alejandre said. “These are very difficult circumstances for our education leaders, since developments with this virus are happening so quickly,” he added. “I fully support our district superintendents’ collective decision to do what is best for our students, employees and families across our county.” Most districts in the county decided on March 13 to close schools as a preventative measure to slow the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Since the closures, confirmed cases of COVID-19 in San Bernardino County continue to rise. On March 17, the Board of Supervisors issued a countywide order to help stop the spread of…

SBCTA committee recommends formal opposition to proposed West County Rail Construction Authority

The SBCTA Policy Committee is recommending that the voter-entrusted agency responsible for transportation planning in San Bernardino County oppose the creation of an entirely new construction authority specifically geared toward one project. SBCTA (the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority) is mandated by law to handle and oversee cooperative regional planning and further an efficient multimodal transportation system countywide. On Wednesday, the agency’s General Policy Committee voted to recommend that SBCTA’s Board of Directors oppose a bill by Assemblymember Chris Holden to establish the West San Bernardino County Rail Construction Authority, whose sole purpose would be to build a six-mile extension of the Gold Line light rail system from the Los Angeles County line to Ontario International Airport. The committee also recommended that the Board formally invite Holden to discuss his proposal at the March meeting of the full SBCTA Board. “We appreciate the Assemblymember’s desire to bring the Gold Line to San Bernardino County, and would welcome connectivity from LA County as part of a comprehensive package of enhanced transit opportunities not just to and from Ontario Airport but our county as a whole. On…

Ontario Airport may serve as repatriation point for U.S. citizens heading back from China

The County has been notified by the State Office of Emergency Services that Ontario International Airport may serve as the repatriation point for up to 240 U.S. citizens, including nine children, arriving from the Wuhan region of China in a U.S. State Department-chartered aircraft. County departments and personnel are working closely with our state, city, and ONT partners to prepare for this possible repatriation, focusing on ensuring the arriving citizens are free of any illness before clearing them to proceed to their respective U.S. destinations, and protecting the San Bernardino County community from the possibility of exposure to any contagions. ONT was designated by the federal government as the official repatriation center for California about a decade ago, and various County departments have participated in numerous comprehensive repatriation exercises with state and federal agencies during the past several years to ensure the County and all other agencies are prepared for this type of event. The occupants of the aircraft will consist entirely of U.S. State Department employees, U.S. contractors who have been working in China, and other U.S. citizens. The aircraft will first arrive in…

Ontario International Airport welcomed 5.5 million passengers in 2019, most since 2008

Ontario International Airport (ONT) continued its run of impressive growth in 2019, welcoming 5.5 million air travelers for the year, the highest level in more than a decade. America’s fastest-growing airport also drew more cargo activity with shipments of commercial freight up 5.1%. “Ontario International Airport is fast becoming the hub of economic activity we believed it could be when we assumed control three years ago,” said Mark Thorpe, chief executive officer of the Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA). “Ontario’s evolution as a viable option for air travel in Southern California is no longer a dream, but a reality. And the reality is that airlines, air travelers and freight shippers recognize Ontario’s value as a first-rate airport with the infrastructure, services and amenities that appeal to customers.” During calendar year 2019, ONT passenger volume increased 9.1% from 5.1 million in 2018 to more than 5.5 million. Domestic travel rose 8% from 4.8 million travelers in 2018 to more than 5.2 million. The number of international passengers increased 33.4% from 227,883 to more than 304,000. Ontario closed 2019 with nearly 515,000 passengers traveling through the airport…

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