HUNTINGTON — Cabell County Commissioner Jim Morgan says the county fee desires out of the airport enterprise, so it’s providing to promote the Robert Newlon Airport property.
The issue is that the board the fee desires to promote the airport to has no cash and no funding supply.
The fee owns the Robert Newlon Airport property close to Lesage. The property is owned by the Cabell County Airport Authority and managed by Carl Bailey, proprietor of the Fly In Cafe, beneath a 30-year lease settlement with the airport authority.
At a gathering of the airport authority on Thursday, Morgan, the fee’s consultant on the five-member airport authority, stated the fee has supplied to promote the property to the airport authority for $200,000. The supply was made in a letter from Ancil Ramey, the fee’s particular legal professional, to airport authority President David Clark. The supply is open till June 1.
However Clark says the Airport Authority has no cash or funding supply.
“We don’t also have a checking account and by no means have had one,” Clark stated.
Clark stated the Airport Authority has been in dialogue with Bailey, who started managing the state’s solely grass runway airport in 2006. Clark advised the county deed the property to the authority so it might negotiate with Bailey for him to purchase it.
“How can we negotiate after we don’t personal that property?” he requested.
Morgan stated promoting the property to the airport authority would treatment that challenge.
When the controversy over the airport property turned public final November, Ramey stated the property was deeded by the Huntington Industrial Corp. to the fee on Oct. 26, 1978. The acquisition worth was $200,000. He stated $150,000 got here from a grant from the West Virginia Aeronautics Fee, and the remainder got here from the fee. Ramey stated the airport authority was created in 1980, and in 1982 it was granted the authority to function the airport.
Ramey stated the airport authority entered into the 30-year lease with Bailey in 1991. Nevertheless, the validity of the leases has been questioned by Ramey and the fee. The fee has thought of a decision to dissolve the airport authority, but it surely has not acted on it due to the dispute over the leases.
Morgan stated the fee was trying to resolve the matter by promoting the property to the airport authority.
Bailey, then again, says the legitimate lease requires the county to reimburse him for the almost $800,000 of his personal cash he has spent to make main enhancements on the airport. He additionally stated the lease requires the county to promote the property on the appraised worth of the land and never the $590,000 the county valued the property’s value.
“Their very own assessor stated the land appraised at $161,700,” he stated.
Bailey supplied $100,000 after which made a second supply of $120,000, however the fee refuses to return down from the $200,000 supply.
Morgan stated the concept was that if Bailey wished to guard his $800,000 value of investments, he would give the airport authority $200,000 to buy the property.
“Then they may promote it to him and we’d all be by means of with it,” he stated.
Authority member Scott Bias stated the fee is unsuitable to attempt to decide the worth of the property primarily based on Bailey’s enhancements and additions.
“You may’t be any extra unsuitable. That’s his cash he put in there,” Bias stated “The dialogue is in regards to the land, the land, and the land. Not his restaurant, campground and different issues he has used his personal cash to place there.”
Bailey’s legal professional, Thomas Scarr, stated the county fee by means of its lawyer reached out on to Bailey and never the airport authority.
“They proposed $200,000 and he counter supplied $100,000 after which $120,000 and I don’t know if both of these had been rejected by the county fee,” Scarr stated. “That’s usually the method.”
Morgan stated the fee didn’t take any formal motion on Bailey’s presents.
Scarr stated Morgan advised the correct process was for Bailey to barter by means of the airport authority.
“That’s inconsistent with what the Cabell County Fee said,” he stated. “The airport authority has no cash, so it’s both going to return from Carl or folks locally, however the timelines we now have had aren’t practical to try this. There may very well be a possibility to hunt funding, however the Cabell County Fee has not given ample alternative to do it. He has indicated a willingness to barter, however the Cabell County Fee has not been prepared to budge one cent.”
Morgan stated Bailey has had loads of time to get financing collectively. He added that the county wished to promote it to him or the airport authority as an alternative of promoting it to another person that will not need to maintain the airport.
“The entire goal is to attempt to switch this to Carl with the least attainable issues,” Morgan stated.
The assembly ended with the airport authority board members voting 4-0 with Morgan abstaining to take up the dialogue on the proposal at one other assembly at on Thursday, Might 20, because the supply stays open till June 1.