The Kingman Airport is considered the crown jewel of Kingman, even as airport users continue to submit complaints.
Originally published Thursday, April 12, 2018 at 06:00a.m.
Previous news articles have brought attention to the fact that City Council wants the Kingman Airport and Industrial Park under its control. Kingman Airport Authority refuses to abandon its control and has approved $500,000 for litigation. Council has approved $200,000 for its part of the litigation. How is this helping the people of Kingman and Mohave County?
The City of Kingman, according to county records, owns the airport and 1,400-plus adjoining acres (which includes lands of the Industrial Park). This leaves many acres for future industrial park development. The KAA board is comprised of Kingman and Mohave County residents, so why is it they do not want the City to take over management of the airport and industrial park?
The City of Kingman has not received any monies, not $1 dollar, from the airport and industrial park. KAA retains all monies received from business interests at the airport and industrial park, which can be substantial. This entity (airport and industrial park) belongs to the residents of Kingman. Is KAA just trying to protect an asinine 24-year contract? If so, does approving $500,000 for legal fees justify this, or are there some underlying factors that would justify such an expense for them?
Five hundred thousand dollars would go a ways to further improve the industrial park instead of paying lawyers. The airport and industrial park is probably the biggest asset that Kingman has, and it needs good management. The question is, has it been managed properly to really benefit Kingman, Mohave County and its residents over the years? It seems that is a real and legitimate question. City leaders and others do not think so, and therefore want to take over their property and management.
KAA receives Federal Aviation Administration funds, which cannot be commingled with other funds, to my knowledge. FAA funds must be used strictly for designated airport improvement, not for the industrial park or any litigation. Monies for any litigation must come from KAA’s own reserves or other sources, which they seem to have plenty of to allot $500,000 for legal fees.
The City and county working together could promote the industrial park and airport to each one’s advantage since the county receives the property taxes. This joint promotion would be better than what seems to be happening under current conditions and would benefit the people. City control should also provide a transparency of operation, which seems lacking now.
I have no ties to the airport and industrial park, or the City, I just feel our residents could be better served under new management.
KAA needs to rethink what it is doing.