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Vote for airport


As a 32-year avid airport supporter and previous owner of two businesses, I urge you to vote yes on the airport use ordinance. The outcome of county question No. 1 will affect other county agencies in our community. This will occur as follows:

The voters of Douglas County imposed a room tax fund (Parks-Recreation, Airport, Library, and Senior Services Sales Tax) at tourist lodging facilities. The PALS sales tax was approved by the voters in 1998. The percentage of room tax funds transferred to the airport since 1999 is approximately 10 percent of the total PALS Sales Tax revenues over that same period. Subsequently, the airport has received no room tax dollars since 2005.

The FAA is withholding some $6 million, which has been approved for the airport improvement plan because of the discriminatory nature of the previous weight limit ordinance. The FAA funds about 95 percent of the airport’s maintenance and improvements. With federal funding and income from the airport, it has been self-supporting for the last five years.

If this airport use ordinance does not pass, funds for airport maintenance will come from the room tax, or other county sources, to say nothing of any airport improvements, thus burdening the other room tax recipients.

By the way, other revenues generated at the airport currently go to the county’s general fund. The county is obligated to maintain the airport as a result of previous FAA funding, and the original purchase of the airport from the federal government.

There is so much potential for a major sports aviation complex, with an international soaring facility and museum. This would be a great asset for our community, creating jobs, worldwide visibility and tremendous potential for general aviation events. The County’s long term goal is to encourage such a complex, subject of course, to continued FAA funding of airport maintenance.

Please help the community and the airport move into the future with local control by voting yes on county question No. 1.

Linda Mae Draper-Hivert

Minden-Tahoe Airport champion