Chapter 4563: AIRPORTS

4563.01 Airport definitions.

As used in sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 of the Revised Code:

(A) "Airport" means any area of land designed and set aside for the landing and taking off of aircraft, and for that purpose possessing one or more hard surfaced runways of a length of not less than three thousand five hundred feet, and designed for the storing, repair, and operation of aircraft, and utilized or to be utilized in the interest of the public for such purposes, and any area of land designed for such purposes for which designs, plans, and specifications conforming to the above requirements have been approved by the office of aviation of the division of multi-modal planning and programs of the department of transportation and for which not less than seventy per cent of the area shown by such designs and plans to constitute the total area has been acquired. An airport is "publicly owned" if the portion thereof used for the landing and taking off of aircraft is owned, operated, leased to, or leased by the United States, any agency or department thereof, this state or any other state, or any political subdivision of this state or any other state, or any other governmental body, public agency, or public corporation, or any combination thereof.

(B) "Airport hazard" means any structure or object of natural growth or use of land within an airport hazard area that obstructs the air space required for the flight of aircraft in landing or taking off at any airport or is otherwise hazardous to such landing or taking off of aircraft.

(C) "Airport hazard area" means any area of land adjacent to an airport that has been declared to be an "airport hazard area" by the office of aviation in connection with any airport approach plan recommended by the office.

(D) "Political subdivision" means any municipal corporation, township, or county.

(E) "Person" means any individual, firm, copartnership, corporation, company, association, joint stock association, or body politic and includes any trustee, receiver, assignee, or other similar representative thereof.

(F) "Structure" means any erected object, including, without limitation, buildings, towers, smokestacks, and overhead transmission lines.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.01

Effective Date: 06-30-1999

4563.02 Airport hazard a public nuisance.

The creation or establishment of an airport hazard shall be a public nuisance.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.02

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.03 Airport zoning boards.

(A) When an airport is publicly owned and all airport hazard areas appertaining to such airport are located inside the territorial limits of one political subdivision, the legislative authority of the political subdivision shall constitute the airport zoning board. Such legislative authority, acting as the airport zoning board, may adopt, administer, and enforce airport zoning regulations for such airport hazard area. Airport zoning regulations may divide an airport hazard area into zones, and, within such zones, regulate and restrict land uses which by their nature constitute airport hazards, and regulate and restrict the height to which structures may be erected or objects of natural growth may be allowed to grow. An obstruction of air space in an airport hazard area rising to a height not in excess of forty feet above the established elevation of the airport, or three feet for each one hundred feet or fraction thereof its location is distant from the nearest point in the perimeter of the airport, whichever is greater, shall be prima facie reasonable.

(B) When an airport is publicly owned and any airport hazard area appertaining to such airport is located in more than one political subdivision, the board of county commissioners of each county in which such airport or such airport hazard area may exist, shall constitute the airport zoning board, which shall have the same power to adopt, administer, and enforce airport zoning regulations as provided in division (A) of this section. The board shall elect its own chairman.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.03

Effective Date: 10-15-1959

4563.031 Zoning regulations.

Within the approach, transitional, inner horizontal, and conical areas at a publicly owned airport, an airport zoning board constituted under section 4563.03 of the Revised Code may adopt, administer, and enforce zoning regulations, in addition to its regulations adopted under section 4563.03 of the Revised Code, in order to ensure the safety of persons occupying or using such areas and the security of property located within such areas. Airport zoning regulations may divide such approach, transitional, inner horizontal, and conical areas into zones, and within such zones, regulate and restrict land use in order to minimize injury, loss of life, and hazards to the safety of persons or to the security of property within such zones, and may include regulations governing population density and concentration of persons within such zones.

Prior to initial zoning under this section, the procedures set forth in sections 4563.05 , 4563.06 , and 4563.08 of the Revised Code for establishing the boundaries of the various zones and adopting the regulations therefor, shall be followed. "Approach area," "transitional area," "inner horizontal area," or "conical area," respectively, means any area of land adjacent to an airport and within an airport hazard area, which has been declared to be an "approach area," "transitional area," "inner horizontal area," or "conical area" by the office of aviation, based upon the approach plan for the airport. No zone established under this section may include any area outside such approach, transitional, inner horizontal, and conical areas.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.031

Effective Date: 09-17-1996

4563.032 Adopting federal obstruction standards.

Any airport zoning board that adopts, administers, and enforces airport zoning regulations for an airport hazard area under section 4563.03 of the Revised Code shall adopt, as regulations, the rules adopted by the department of transportation under section 4561.32 of the Revised Code that are based in whole upon the obstruction standards set forth in 14 C.F.R. 77.21 to 77.29 , as amended, to uniformly regulate the height and location of structures and objects of natural growth in any airport's clear zone surface, horizontal surface, conical surface, primary surface, approach surface, or transitional surface.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.032

Effective Date: 10-15-1991

4563.04 Conflict between zoning regulations.

In the event of conflict between any airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, and any other zoning regulations applicable to the same area, whether the conflict be with respect to the height of structures or objects of natural growth, the use of land, or any other matter, and whether such other regulations were adopted by the political subdivision which adopted the airport zoning regulations or by some other political subdivision, the limitation or requirement best calculated to insure safety shall govern.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.04

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.05 Airport zoning commission.

Prior to initial zoning of any airport hazard area under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, the airport zoning board which is to adopt the regulations shall appoint a commission, to be known as the airport zoning commission, to recommend the boundaries of the various zones to be established and the regulations to be adopted therefor. Such commission shall make a preliminary report and hold public hearings thereon before submitting its final report, and the airport zoning board shall not hold its public hearings or take other action until it has received the final report of such commission. Where a city planning commission, township zoning commission, or county rural zoning commission already exists, it may be appointed as the airport zoning commission.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.05

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.06 Adoption of airport zoning regulations - procedure.

No airport zoning regulations shall be adopted, amended, or changed under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, except by action of the legislative body of the political subdivision, after a public hearing in relation thereto, at which parties in interest and citizens shall have an opportunity to be heard. At least thirty days notice of the hearing shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the political subdivision in which the airport hazard area to be zoned is located.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.06

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.07 Zoning regulations shall be reasonable.

All airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code shall be reasonable, and none shall impose any requirement or restriction which is not reasonably necessary to insure the safety of aircraft in landing and taking off and the safety of persons occupying or using the area and the security of property thereon. In determining what regulations are necessary, each political subdivision or airport zoning board shall consider, among other things, the character of the flying operations expected to be conducted at the airport, the per cent of slope or grade customarily used in descent or ascent of the aircraft expected to use the airport with reference to their size, speed, and type, the nature of the terrain within the airport hazard area, the character of the neighborhood, and the uses to which the property to be zoned is put or is adaptable.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.07

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.08 Determination of airport hazard area.

In order to define and determine the airport hazard area in which airport zoning shall be applicable, the office of aviation, upon request of any airport zoning commission appointed pursuant to section 4563.05 of the Revised Code, shall formulate and adopt, and may revise when necessary, an airport approach plan for any airport within its jurisdiction. Each plan shall indicate the airport hazard area, the circumstances under which structures, objects of natural growth, public highways, and certain uses of land would be airport hazards, and the height limits of structures and objects of natural growth, and what other restrictions should be contained in the airport zoning regulations. In adopting or revising the plan, the office shall consider, among other things, the size, type, and speed of aircraft expected to use the airport, the character of the flying operations expected to be conducted at the airport, the traffic pattern and regulations affecting flying operations at the airport, the location of public highways, the nature of the terrain, the height of existing structures and objects of natural growth above the level of the airport, and the possibility of lowering or removing existing obstructions. The office may obtain and consider information from and the opinion of any agency of the federal government charged with the promotion, regulation, or control of civil aeronautics as to the approaches necessary to safe flying operations at the airport.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.08

Effective Date: 09-17-1996

4563.09 Zoning regulations not to interfere with continuance of nonconforming use.

No airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 of the Revised Code shall require the removal, lowering, or other change or alteration of any structure or object of natural growth not conforming to the regulations when adopted or amended, or otherwise interfere with the continuance of any nonconforming use, except as provided in section 4563.14 of the Revised Code.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.09

Effective Date: 01-01-2004

4563.10 Political subdivision or zoning board not granted power to prohibit certain uses.

Nothing in sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 of the Revised Code, shall confer any power on any political subdivision or airport zoning board to prohibit the use of any land for farming, dairying, pasturage, apiculture, horticulture, floriculture, viticulture, or animal and poultry husbandry, except where such use shall create an airport hazard. The provisions of sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 of the Revised Code shall not apply in respect to the location, relocation, erection, construction, reconstruction, change, alteration, maintenance, removal, use, or enlargement of any buildings or structures, now existing or constructed in the future, of any public utility or railroad.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.10

Effective Date: 01-01-2004

4563.11 Administration and enforcement of zoning regulations.

All airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, shall provide for the administration and enforcement of such regulations. The duties of any administrative agency designated pursuant to sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, shall include that of issuing all permits under section 4563.12 of the Revised Code.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.11

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.12 Permit required prior to substantial change or alteration.

Airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, may require that a permit be obtained before any new structure or use may be constructed or established and before any existing structure or use may be substantially changed or substantially altered in an airport hazard area. No permit shall be granted that would allow the establishment or creation of an airport hazard, or permit a nonconforming structure to be made higher or a nonconforming object of natural growth to become higher or become a greater hazard to air navigation than it was when the applicable regulations were adopted or than it is when the application for a permit is made. If any nonconforming use is voluntarily discontinued for two years or more, any future use of the premises shall be in conformity with sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.12

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.13 Airport zoning boards of appeals.

All airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, shall provide for an airport zoning board of appeals. Where a zoning board of appeals already exists, it may be designated as the airport zoning board of appeals. The airport zoning board of appeals, except in those instances in which an existing zoning board of appeals is designated as the airport zoning board of appeals, shall consist of five members, each to be appointed for a term of three years by the authority adopting the regulations and subject to removal by the appointing authority for cause upon written charges and after public hearing. The first members of such board of appeals shall be so designated that two shall serve for one year, two shall serve for two years, and one shall serve for three years.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.13

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.14 Airport zoning board of appeals - powers.

The [airport zoning] board of appeals shall have and exercise the following powers:

(A) To hear and decide appeals from any order, requirement, decision, or determination made by the administrative agency in the enforcement of the airport zoning regulations, as provided in sections 4563.11 and 4563.12 of the Revised Code.

(B) To hear and allow, refuse, or allow with modifications or conditions, any variance from the terms of the airport zoning regulations which the board may be authorized to pass upon pursuant to such regulations.

(C) To hear and decide specific variances under section 4563.16 of the Revised Code.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.14

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.15 Airport zoning board of appeals may change airport zoning regulations - hearings.

(A) An airport zoning board of appeals, by a majority vote of its members, may affirm, reverse, or modify any order, requirement, decision, or determination of the administrative agency created pursuant to section 4563.11 of the Revised Code.

(B) The airport zoning board of appeals shall adopt rules in accordance with the provisions of the ordinance or resolution by which it was created. Meetings of the board shall be held at the call of the chairman and at such other times as the board determines. The chairman, or in his absence the acting chairman, may administer the oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses. All hearings of the board shall be public. The board shall keep minutes of its proceedings, showing the vote of each member upon each question, or, if absent or failing to vote, indicating such fact, and shall keep records of its examinations and other official actions, all of which shall immediately be filed in the office of the board and shall be a public record.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.15

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.16 Application to airport zoning board of appeals for variance.

Any person desiring to erect any structure, or increase the height of any structure, or permit the increases in height of any object of natural growth, or otherwise use his property in any manner in conflict with airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, may apply to the airport zoning board of appeals for a variance from the zoning regulations in question. Such variance shall be allowed where a literal application or enforcement of the regulations would result in unnecessary hardship and the relief granted would not be contrary to the public interest or create conditions dangerous to the safety of aircraft using the airport, but would do substantial justice and would not be in conflict with factors set down for consideration in sections 4563.07 and 4563.08 of the Revised Code. The board of appeals may subject any variance to any reasonable conditions that they deem necessary.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.16

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.17 Markers and lights to indicate airport hazards.

In granting any permit under section 4563.12 of the Revised Code by the administrative agency or under section 4563.16 of the Revised Code by the airport zoning board of appeals, such agency may so condition such permit, if they deem such action advisable and reasonable in the circumstances, to require the owner of the structure or object of natural growth in question to permit the political subdivision, owning the airport, at its own expense, to install, operate, and maintain thereon such markers and lights as may be necessary to indicate the presence of an airport hazard.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.17

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.18 Appeals to airport zoning board of appeals.

(A) Any person aggrieved by any decision of an administrative agency made in its administration of airport zoning regulations adopted under sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, or any governing body of a political subdivision or any airport zoning board which is of the opinion that a decision of such an administrative agency is an improper application of airport zoning regulations of concern to such governing body or board, may appeal to the airport zoning board of appeals authorized to hear and decide appeals from the decisions of such administrative agency.

(B) All appeals taken under this section shall be taken within twenty days after an order is filed in the office of the administrative agency, as provided by the rules of the airport zoning board of appeals, by filing with the administrative agency from which the appeal is taken and with the airport zoning board of appeals a notice of appeal specifying the grounds of such appeal. The administrative agency from which the appeal is taken shall transmit to the airport zoning board of appeals all the papers constituting the record upon which the action appealed from was taken.

(C) An appeal shall stay all proceedings in furtherance of the action appealed from unless the administrative agency from which the appeal is taken certifies to the airport zoning board of appeals, after the notice of appeal has been filed with it, that by reason of the facts stated in the certificate a stay would, in its opinion, cause imminent peril to life or property. In such cases proceedings shall not be stayed other than by order of the airport zoning board of appeals on notice of the agency from which the appeal is taken and on due notice to the parties in interest.

(D) The airport zoning board of appeals shall fix a reasonable time for the hearing of appeals, give public notice and due notice to the parties in interest, and decide the same within a reasonable time. Upon the hearing any party may appear in person, by agent, or by attorney.

(E) The airport zoning board of appeals, in conformity with sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 , inclusive, of the Revised Code, may reverse, affirm wholly or partly, or modify, the order, requirement, decision, or determination appealed from.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.18

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.19 Appeals to court of common pleas.

Any person aggrieved, or any taxpayer, or any legislative authority, or any airport zoning board affected by any order of the airport zoning board of appeals may appeal within 30 days to the court of common pleas of the county in which the affected real estate lies, and upon appeal thereof a trial de novo shall be had.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.19

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.20 Prohibited acts.

(A) No person shall violate any regulation, order, or ruling promulgated or made pursuant to sections 4563.01 to 4563.21 of the Revised Code.

(B) Whoever violates this section shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars. Each day's willful continuation of the violation is a separate offense.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.20

Effective Date: 01-01-2004

4563.21 Court action to enforce regulations.

The political subdivision or airport zoning board adopting zoning regulations under section 4563.01 to 4563.21, inclusive, of the Revised Code, may institute in any court of competent jurisdiction an action to prevent, restrain, correct, or abate any violation of sections 4563.01 to 4563.21, inclusive, of the Revised Code, or of airport zoning regulations adopted under such sections, or of any order or ruling made in connection with the administration or enforcement. The court shall adjudge to the plaintiff such relief, by way of injunction, which may be mandatory, or otherwise, as may be proper under all the facts of and circumstances of the case, in order fully to effectuate the purposes of sections 4563.01 to 4563.21, inclusive, of the Revised Code, and of the regulations adopted and orders and rulings made pursuant thereto.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.21

Effective Date: 10-05-1955

4563.30 Rules regarding security of airports.

(A) As used in this section:

(1) "Aircraft" has the same meaning as in section 4561.01 of the Revised Code.

(2) "Airport" has the same meaning as in section 4561.01 of the Revised Code except that it does not include any airport operated by a multi-state authority or any airport with scheduled commercial air carrier service.

(3) "Private-use airport" means an airport used exclusively by the owner of the airport and by persons the owner authorizes.

(4) "Public-use airport" means an airport available for use by the general public without the prior approval of the owner or operator except as federal law or regulation require.

(5) "Sensitive site" means an area that would be considered a key asset or critical infrastructure of the United States, including, but not limited to, military installations, nuclear and chemical plants, centers of government, monuments and iconic structures, and international ports.

(B) Notwithstanding any provision of the Revised Code to the contrary, the department of transportation, in consultation with the department of public safety, shall adopt rules regarding the security of public-use and private-use airports. The rules shall include, but not be limited to, provisions that do the following:

(1) Require all public-use and private-use airports located in whole or in part in this state to register biennially with the department of transportation;

(2) Require all public-use airports located in whole or in part in this state, and all private-use airports located in whole or in part in this state that are located within thirty nautical miles of either a metropolitan population of at least one hundred thousand persons or a sensitive site, or that have eleven or more based aircraft, a runway length more than two thousand feet, or more than ten thousand annual aircraft operations, to do all of the following:

(a) Prepare a written security plan that is consistent with the most recent security guidelines for general aviation airports published by the United States transportation security administration;

(b) Develop a written list of emergency contacts and telephones;

(c) Restrict access to aircraft keys by unlicensed persons;

(d) Require pilots, including those renting aircraft, to operate pursuant to F.A.R. 61.3 regarding pilot identification;

(e) Create an emergency locater map that identifies runways, ramp areas, fence lines, gates, hydrants, emergency shelters, buildings, and hazardous material sites;

(f) Familiarize local law enforcement agencies with the airport and consult with them in the airport's development of security procedures.

(3) Require all aircraft owners or pilots to secure their aircraft;

(4) Require all persons who rent an aircraft to present government-issued identification, in addition to any pilot's license, to the person who rents them the aircraft;

(5) Address or govern the security of public-use and private-use airports located in whole or in part in this state in any other manner that the department of transportation, in consultation with the department of public safety, determines to be necessary.

(C) The security plan described in division (B)(2)(a) and the emergency locater map described in division (B)(2)(e) of this section shall display prominently the following statement: "This document may contain information that, if disclosed, could endanger the life or safety of the public; therefore, this document is to be maintained and used in a manner that preserves the confidentiality of the information it contains in a manner consistent with law."

(D) Each public-use and private-use airport located in whole or in part in this state shall provide a copy of its registration described in division (B)(1) of this section, and when applicable, a copy of its security plan and emergency locater map to the department of public safety, to the department of transportation, to the sheriff of the county in which the airport is located in whole or in part, and, if the airport is located in whole or in part in a municipal corporation, to the chief of police of each municipal corporation in which it is wholly or partly located. Copies of registrations, emergency locater maps, and security plans that are in the possession of the department of public safety, the office of aviation, a sheriff, or a chief of police and that were provided under this division are not public records under section 149.43 of the Revised Code and are not subject to mandatory disclosure under that section.

(E) This section shall not be construed to replace or supersede airport security standards the United States department of homeland security and the transportation security administration require, or safety standards the United States department of transportation and the federal aviation administration require.

Cite as R.C. § 4563.30

Effective Date: 04-14-2006

4563.99 [Repealed].

Cite as R.C. § 4563.99

Effective Date: 01-01-2004