LA mayor appointed to air safety task force

Associated Press
Friday September 28, 2001

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Mayor James Hahn has agreed to head up a national task force on airport security and said he will work to restore the nation’s confidence in air travel. 

“Airport security is a top concern for mayors across the country,” said Hahn, who will lead the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ newly formed task force. 

Hahn was appointed by the president of the conference, Mayor Marc Morial of New Orleans. The task force will offer recommendations to the president and Congress for improving airport security. 

“We can see what works in our cities that maybe they’re not able to see directly at the national level,” Hahn said Thursday. 

He also said one of his top priorities would be to secure government assistance for airport employees who may be displaced as a result of new security measures, which might include replacing passenger and luggage personnel with law enforcement officials. 

Hahn said he already has sent a letter to President Bush, urging him to approve assistance packages that would include extended benefits and job training. 

The conference of mayors has also urged Bush to federalize airport security, which is now a local concern. On Thursday, Bush asked governors to mobilize their National Guard troops to boost airport security.