The proposal for new buyers of existing
leases was the remaining years on the lease
plus the two 10-year options. My question
was, “Why not another 20-year lease plus the
two 10s? That way hangar values remain
solid.” That was taken “under advisement.”
That’s always a little scary.
Bottom line, beyond the lease payments,
the city gets $400,000 per year in property
taxes on all the hangars. If costs get ridiculous, airport bums will leave, and that
revenue stream will dwindle mightily. We’ve
already seen that in some places in aviation,
and that’s very, very sad. Especially when
you know it doesn’t have to be that way.
Don’t get me wrong; I’m thankful for what I
have. But neither do I want to stand still and
be run over by a government agency that has
little understanding of the goodness and passion in aviation.
Anyway, thanks for listening. This isn’t
the pretty stuff; this is the survival stuff, the
survival of airports and airport bums. To
my airport’s credit, its opening salvo was a
step in the right direction: Get rid of the
willy-nilly stuff once and for all. That, in
large part, was due to the fact that the local
airport bums stood up and drew a line in
the sand. And bless ’em for that. Driven by
What does urban development
know about operating an
airport? Not a heck of a lot.
passion, beings can accomplish some very
good things. There are battles to be fought
for the survival of general aviation, and this
is one of them.
It’s my hope that McNary Field (KSLE)
in Salem, Oregon, will remain one of the
friendly airports, and I hope your airport
does, too. I think (hope) we’re on the right
track; we just have some tweaking to do. The
key, of course, is communication: Do it often
and keep it open. The other key, for both
parties, is consistency. It’s much easier to
make good decisions when the rules are
known and consistent. Willy-nilly just
doesn’t cut it.
Lauran Paine Jr., EAA 582274, is a retired military pilot
and retired airline pilot. He built and flies an RV- 8 and
has owned a Stearman and a Champ. Learn more about
Lauran at his website, www.ThunderBumper.com.
Toll Free: 1-800-248-0638
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