Jeffrey W. Letwin, co-chair of the Firm's Business Services Department, spoke on two panels at the 2012 ACI-NA/World Conference & Exhibition in Calgary, AB, Canada on September 8, 2012. The first panel, "Emerging Issues in Airport Development - Overview of the Legal Requirements Based on Recent Experiences at Pittsburgh, Las Vegas and Miami," included an overview of FAA restrictions, financing, land use, and other problems that arose in recent development projects at several airports. The second panel, "Specific Issues That Every Airport Counsel Should Consider in Airport Ground Lease and Participatory Development Agreements," covered several issue areas with respect to ground leases and participatory agreements, including: (i) creation of the new legal entity, usually an LLC; (ii) term of the lease; (iii) premises – green field with needed infrastructure and utilities versus demolition or relocation if there are existing structures; (iv) milestones for development and consequences of failing to meet milestones; (v) permitted uses; (vi) rent and rent adjustments, percentage rent issues, incentives; (vii) extent of control over design and construction; (viii) financing and ownership issues; (ix) assignment, subletting, and transfer clauses and issue of flipping; (x) indemnification; (xi) performance measures; (xii) signage; and (xiii) non-compete clauses.
The Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA) represents local, regional, and state governing bodies that own and operate commercial airports in the United States and Canada. In addition, over 350 aviation-related businesses are members of ACI-NA, providing goods and services to airports. Mr. Letwin is a member of ACI-NA and has previously chaired its Legal Committee.