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UC Regional Airport Board Members Discuss Acting As Board Vs. Authority

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
UC Regional Airport Board Members Discuss Acting As Board Vs. Authority

Upper Cumberland Regional Airport Board members trying to decide if the airport should continue being managed by a board, or if it should transition to an authority.

Airport Manager Dean Selby said an authority operates as a separate entity, typically like the railroad authority or water utility districts. He said while the airport essentially already operates as an authority with its processes, it is not entirely independent.

“And it would create an extra layer of insulation to the four governments from a liability should anything happen, that’s the primary reason for this,” Selby said. “And it also allows the airport to enter into loan agreements with agencies without having the taxpayer having to back up the loan.”

Selby said that based on preliminary conversations with UC Regional Airport lawyers, they recommend the airport make that switch. He said officially transitioning to an authority would formalize the processes they already have.

Selby said board representatives from the City of Sparta had some initial concerns about alienating entities from the administrative process and from concepts like eminent domain. He said he does not believe that will be the case, and that he believes it will actually give a larger voice to those who have not had one before.

“We want to see what their feelings are, because everyone has their own way of looking at things,” Selby said. “And that’s the power of board is that you get to see perspectives that you don’t see if you’re looking through it at one lens. So that’s why I’m proud of the fact that they do think like this and are looking at it outside the box.

Selby said in his mind, the next steps are to firm up proposals and continue discussions.

“They’re going to have a proposal for the next board meeting to say here’s what we need to do and what resolutions we need to adopt and then they will present them,” Selby said. “And then the attorneys will go to all four governments and hash that out with the city councils and the county commissions.”


The post UC Regional Airport Board Members Discuss Acting As Board Vs. Authority appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.