Are you ‘plush enough’ for airport work?

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Hi Jim:

Enjoyed your column on the airport trucks.  Like you, I wonder what was going on there and cannot imagine any of these being a work vehicle.  I believe we’ll all learn the truth in due time.

But as an airport tenant and attendee at every board meeting, I think you missed an opportunity to clarify something.  Those 2014 trucks were acquired in the fall of 2013.  As you may recall, the FBI search occurred in November and Rex Tippetts, the former airport manager, was fired the following month.  The truck purchase occurred during the Tippetts era when there was little to no oversight as to his conduct.  Specifically, I never heard any board discussion about such a purchase nor did I see it described in any agenda or minutes.  He apparently had a free hand to do this under financial protocols in effect at the time.

The current board, in contrast, is very involved and motivated to close all of these loose cannon options and has been doing so regularly.  They are successfully facing numerous challenges inherited from the past.  Although the pace is slower than many of us would prefer, this airport board is focused on the job, dealing with problems not of their creation, developing improved checks and balances and thus deserves to be differentiated from those which preceded it.

Bill Marvel

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