Saturday, June 28, 2014

EAA 5K Run/Walk to benefit Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services

To invent an airplane is nothing. To build one is something. But to fly is everything. Otto Lilienthal said those words in the late 1800’s but people still feel the same respect when they attend EAA Airventure Oshkosh.

Every year EAA partners with a local non-profit agency for the Runway 5k, and this year Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services, Inc. was chosen as the partner for the run that will be held on Saturday, Aug. 2, during the final weekend of EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2014. Being chosen as EAA’s community beneficiary will propel Christine Ann into its 30 year anniversary of service in September 2014. With this honor, Christine Ann will utilize funds raised for the Youth Advocacy and Prevention Programs.

By participating in the Runway 5k run/walk, individuals and families will be able to spread their wings as all registrations include free admission to AirVenture on Saturday, August 2, an official 5k event T-shirt, and post-race refreshments. While on the grounds, you could enjoy the USAF Thunderbirds, daily and night airshow, and 1964: The Tribute playing your favorite hits of The Beatles throughout the day on Saturday.


Interested runners and walkers can sign-up online or registration can be completed at one of the following: Monday, July 28 through Friday, Aug.1, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. at the Welcome Center located on EAA AirVenture Oshkosh grounds. Thursday, July 31 through Friday, Aug. 1, between the hours of 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services, Inc. 206 Algoma Blvd, Oshkosh, WI, 54901. To register online, go to EAA’s Web site: www.eaa.org/en/airventure/features-and-attractions/special-events/runway-5k-run-walk.


Christine Ann is thankful for the generous support of our local race sponsors: Northwestern Financial Network, Oshkosh Corporation, Grant Thornton, Wihlm Dental, Basler Turbo and WVBO. 
 
Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services, Inc., a United Way Agency, is a nonprofit organization launched in 1984 and has been empowering individuals and families in the Winnebago and Green Lake Counties impacted by domestic violence through education, safety and support for the past 30 years. Christine Ann is supported by grants, generous donations, and the passion of volunteers. Visit Christine Ann online at www.christineann.net.

Source:   http://www.thenorthwestern.com

Geisinger's LifeFlight helicopter a hit at Saturday event

Marieda Joyner and her best friend went to Nay Aug Park Saturday night to hear the music and watch the fireworks. 

When she saw the Geisinger LifeFlight helicopter on display on the helipad, she had one more thing to do: say thank you.

The 51-year-old Taylor resident totaled her car in a crash and was flown to Geisinger Community Medical Center in 2007.

“I thought I was going to die, but the people inside (the helicopter) comforted me,” she said. “I knew that I was going to be OK.”

The helicopter was on display as part of an Emergency Education Symposium, presented by GCMC and other emergency crews, including Pennsylvania Ambulance. Before United Polka Artists with Jimmy Sturr and his orchestra played and before fireworks lit up the skies, crews advised park-goers about fireworks and summer safety. At the helipad, visitors were able to sit inside the helicopter and ask the crew questions about their work.

In Ms. Joyner’s case, she gave hugs and got her photo taken with her friend, Debra London, as well as LifeFlight medic Robert F. Sembrat and LifeFlight nurse Bryan Shepard.

“This Life Flight saved me,” Ms. Joyner said.

Mr. Shepard said the LifeFlight provides service to most of Wayne, Susquehanna, Wyoming, Lackawanna and Luzerne counties.

Pointing to the equipment strapped to the walls of the helicopter’s interior, he explained that crews in the air are “pretty much ready for everything” with cardiac monitors, IV infusion pumps and even an intensive care unit quality ventilator.

LifeFlight pilot Michael Carson said he closely monitors the weather, conditions and determines whether a flight is possible, even calculating the maximum weight of the patient or patients the chopper can transport. The helicopter’s maximum speed is about 165 mph, but it usually travels at about 135 mph, he said.

Before he joined the LifeFlight team, Mr. Carson spent 15 years as a medevac pilot in the military.

“We’ve got the best medics and nurses I’ve flown with in a long time,” he said of the other men in uniform, talking to the families who stopped by.

In all, about 60 people checked out the helicopter, many with small children who grinned as they climbed into the passenger seat and posed for pictures.

Michael McCormick of Pennsylvania Ambulance said events like Saturday’s help take some of the fear out of medical transports, whether they are by helicopter or ambulance.

“I think it’s important that the public is aware what goes on in an ambulance,” he said. “Though it may be scary, we’re going to help them.”

Story and video:   http://thetimes-tribune.com


Vintage aircraft on display in Cottage Grove

COTTAGE GROVE — At 70, Doug Kindred says he’s the junior member of the Oregon Aviation Historical Society’s board of directors.

So it pleased him greatly to see youngsters roaming the grounds of Jim Wright Field at Cottage Grove’s airport this morning, checking out vintage aircraft and automobiles during the historical society’s first-ever Wings & Wheels event.

“We’re always trying to get younger people interested,” Kindred said.

The historical society formed in 1983, and has since collected Oregon-related aviation artifacts that highlight the history of flight in the state.

The group, which is headquartered at the airport, has also been involved in the restoration of a number of airplanes built in the first half of the 20th century. Proceeds from today’s event will be applied to three restoration projects already in progress.

The event continues until 6 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults, and free for children ages 16 and younger.


Story and photo gallery:  http://registerguard.com

Dayton Air Show wows thousands

DAYTON —

Michael Nadaud has aspirations to become a pilot.

The 30-year-old computer programmer got a little inspiration Saturday from the Blue Angels.

“They’re awesome,” said Nadaud, wearing a NASA t-shirt as the six F/A-18 jets thundered over the Vectren Dayton Air Show.

Nadaud and his wife, Julie, were part of a crowd of thousands who spilled through the gates of the air show at Dayton International Airport to watch the Navy’s jet team and acrobatic performers like Sean D. Tucker and Patty Wagstaff. The air show takes to the skies again today.

The couple drove from their Cincinnati home to last year’s show, but never saw any performances because they arrived just after a biplane crash June 22, 2013 killed a wing walker and pilot and canceled remaining performances that day, Michael Nadaud said.

Saturday’s show went smoothly, fending off occasional rain drops and a gray overcast before making way for the sun just in time for the Blue Angels take-off.

Air show officials will not release attendance numbers until Monday, but they were pleased with the first day’s turnout which may easily exceed the 23,000 who attended over two days last year. “This tells me that Daytonians want their air show and they want their jet team,” said Dayton Air Show spokesman Timothy Gaffney.

Tyler Mitchell, 47, of Vandalia, brought his 7-year-old son, Jayden, already a young veteran of three air shows.

“He loves planes,” his father said. “Everything about them.”

Not surprisingly, Jayden picked the fast and loud acrobatic jets of the Blue Angels as his favorite performers.

“Because they do some awesome stuff,” Jayden said.

Air show attendees roamed dozens of vintage aircraft on the ground, too.

Tony DeSantis, a retired airline pilot, answered questions about the historic American Airlines DC-3 “Flagship Detroit” while Judy, his wife, sang tunes from the Big Band era to those waiting in line to tour the passenger cabin.

“I didn’t want to be left home and I am a professional singer,” she said.

Tony Desantis, 66, flew the stick and rudder plane to Dayton.

“It’s like you’re sitting in a piece of history and actually getting to fly it,” said DeSantis, of Palm City, Fla.

Normally accustomed to flying large, state-of-the-art airliners like the Boeing 767, DeSantis literally had his hands full manually controlling the world’s oldest flying DC-3 without the aid of modern fly-by-wire computers. The plane first flown in 1937 was restored after it was found as a crop duster in a field in Virginia about a decade ago.

“For me having 15,000 hours of flying time, when I started flying this thing, it was challenging,” said DeSantis, a former Air Force pilot who described flying the DC-3 as “seat of the pants.”

“I love it,” he said. “It’s more fun flying this thing than anything else I’d say.”

History also found a spot under a Tuskegee Airmen tent, where Army Air Corps veteran Harold J. Wesley, 90, of Springfield, remembered the fighter plane protection the pioneering black airmen gave his B-24 Liberator crew over Europe.

“When you see a German airplane coming at you, you need all the help you can get,” he said.

Donald E. Elder, 85, of Columbus, trained with the Tuskegee Airmen, but never deployed overseas.

“It’s impressive,” he said, “to come back and see the people recognize history.”

Story and photo gallery:  http://www.daytondailynews.com

Vintage planes gather in Idaho Falls

Plane: $500,000.

Fuel: $5.50 a gallon. 


Maintenance: Endless.


The camaraderie tied to owning one of fewer than 100 Beechcraft Staggerwing planes: Priceless.


“The airplane originally brought us together, and we are all still passionate about the airplane, but over 40-plus years, the airplane has played a second role to the friendships you make all over the country,” John Parish said. “Really, the glue now is the friendships.”

Parish flew his Beechcraft King Air C90 from Tullahoma, Tenn., to visit his friend, Bob Hoff, and Hoff’s sons, Thomas and James,, at the Aero Mark Inc. hanger for the fourth annual Round-Engine Round-Up. The event pulls in enthusiasts of 1920s and 1930s planes from around the country.

The most popular plane among the group is the Beechcraft Staggerwing, a vintage round-engine biplane where the top wing is farther back on the plane than the bottom wing — a rarity for aircraft. Thomas Hoff, vice president of Aero Mark, said the planes range in value from $250,000 to more than $500,000. There are fewer than 100 in existence.

The Round-Up is one of two events per year where the group of 30 to 40 pilots get together. Parish hosts the other one in October at the Beechcraft Heritage Museum in Tennessee. He is the museum’s co-founder and chairman of the board.

“The people that own them get together talk about flying them and maintaining them; there’s just a lot of friendship. Kind of like car clubs,” Thomas Hoff said. “It’s a very interesting group of people. It’s everyone from CEOs to Joe Blow, so it’s pretty interesting.”

The group left Idaho Falls this morning to fly to Smiley Creek for brunch and were to return to Idaho Falls later today for a gathering at the Hoff ranch, south of town.

Bob Siegfried flew his Beechcraft V35B from Chicago. He and Bob Hoff are on the Tennessee museum’s board of directors.

“It’s just people that like airplanes,” Siegfried said. “Good personalities. I’ve been flying for 68 years and loved every minute of it. It’s a ball.”

Pat Napolitano is western regional service representative for Mid-Continent Instruments and Avionics in Wichita, Kan. He was at the round up for the second time — flying his boss’ Staggerwing. He’s also the plane’s mechanic.

Napolitano, a pilot for 27 years, flies the Staggerwing as a business plane.

“This is the only corporate-flying Staggerwing in the country,” Napolitano said. “This is my company car, I use it to go visit customers.”

While a select few have the honor of owning such rare planes, everyone can admire them.

Kirk Lindholm is a photographer for the Legacy Flight Museum in Rexburg. He is a self-proclaimed “airport rat” and has a love for vintage planes. For Lindholm, nothing compares to the Staggerwing.

“It’s kind of like some women you see on the street. They take your breath away,” he said.

Story and photo:  http://www.postregister.com

Experimental Aircraft Association campground opens 31 days ahead of AirVenture

OSHKOSH – Terry Brokaw’s been attending AirVenture since the 1950′s.

“I’ve been here every year except 1974,” he told FOX 11.

Brokaw and his wife Susie have attended together since 1971.

They were some of the first in line at EAA Friday for Camp Scholler’s opening.

“We’ve been in this area, or within 50 yards of it for the last 20 years. So we come over a month ahead of it to get MY spot,” Terry Brokaw explained.

The Brokaws aren’t alone, many campers have that one perfect place to set up.

“They want sites next to their friends they’ve been with through the years and so they’ll do whatever it takes to get those sites,” said EAA employee Amy Wenig.

“Some will set their camper right away, others will just stake out their positions, put their credential there and then be back shortly before AirVenture,” explained EAA spokesperson Dick Knapinski.

A lot of AirVenture visitors come early, claim their spots and then go back home, but some stay and volunteer.

“They’re planting flowers, building picnic tables, moving things around. Just getting the grounds ready to go,” said Knapinski.

So how are the grounds? They’re a little mushy because of recent rain, but not too bad thanks to drainage improvements EAA did in 2011 and 2012.

“You’ll see those drain tiles, those rain-moving ditches, storm water ditches. They’re all doing exactly what they’re supposed to do,” explained Knapinski.

Seeing it all come together is why Susie Brokaw likes to get here early.

“We get to watch everything happen and come in. I love to watch this little city build. It’s just amazing,” she said.

That, and seeing their friends.

“Originally, we came for the airplanes, but now it’s more for the social aspect, because there’s a while bunch of people we never see except for here,” explained Terry Brokaw.

AirVenture runs from July 28th to August 3rd this year.

Story,  video and comments:  http://fox11online.com

Grand jury: Stanislaus County sheriff’s helicopter can be used for community events

A civil grand jury Friday released a report that found that it’s OK for the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department to use its helicopter in community events, such as efforts to help at-risk youths or charitable organizations.

The grand jury, however, noted that county policies do not allow for the sheriff’s helicopter to be used for such non-law enforcement purposes. The grand jurors recommended that a policy be created with a procedure on how to gain approval before the helicopter is used for something other than a public safety response.

Complaints about the helicopter usage came from a resident who alleged a helicopter ride was used as an auction item to benefit a local hospice organization. Concerns about the helicopter appeared in several articles in a local newspaper, according to the grand jury’s report.

A Stanislaus County sheriff’s helicopter took part in the Make Dreams Real event May 15, 2013, at Saddle Creek Resort in Copperopolis, Calaveras County, which raised money to send schoolchildren to sixth-grade camp and other outdoor education programs, according to a Modesto Bee news story published a year ago.

The helicopter’s use for a golf ball drop over the course was intended to benefit the charity organization, designed to help Stanislaus County children.

No specific event was mentioned in the grand jury’s report. As part of their inquiry, jurors reviewed the sheriff’s helicopter flight records from July 2008 through August 2013 to identify activities that might not be considered a law enforcement purpose.

The county CEO’s policy indicates that the sheriff’s helicopter shall be used only for law enforcement or emergency-related purposes, or for other county government purposes with prior approval from the county’s chief executive officer or a designee.

The sheriff’s policies list several proper uses for the helicopter, which include assisting other public safety agencies, assisting sheriff’s personnel on the ground, capturing suspects or inmates who present a danger, finding a missing person, conducting vehicle pursuits and rescuing a stranded person in a remote area.

The grand jury found that neither policy has specific language or procedure that allows usage of sheriff’s vehicles in non-law enforcement activities, no matter how charitable or beneficial. Yet sheriff’s vehicles, particularly helicopters, have been used in community events numerous times in the past several years.

Participating in activities to support at-risk youth and charitable groups provides a positive impression of the Sheriff’s Department and other law enforcement in the county, according to the report. The grand jury also said the department is especially supportive of activities that focus on the positive role of law enforcement, as opposed to the more apparent conflict that occurs in criminal investigations.

The grand jury recommended that a specific policy be written defining the use of sheriff’s resources such as helicopters for non-law enforcement activities. The jurors also recommended that such usage be approved in advance of the event by two senior managers at the Sheriff’s Department, or one senior manager each from the Sheriff’s Department and the CEO’s Office.

The report indicates that the elected sheriff is in a unique position in relation to the authority of the county’s CEO and the Board of Supervisors. While the board maintains approval authority of the department’s budget, the sheriff is directly accountable to the voters.

The grand jury says neither the Board of Supervisors nor the county CEO has direct supervisory authority over Sheriff Adam Christianson or his department.

The grand jury, which is a watchdog group, is appointed by the presiding judge of the Superior Court to serve a one-year term. Its recommendations are not legally binding, but officials have 90 days to respond in writing to the findings.

Story, photos and comments: http://www.modbee.com

No trains, but there are planes and automobiles: Aitkin Municipal Airport, (KAIT), Minnesota

Fly in, drive in, or walk into the annual event this Sunday at the Aitkin Municipal Airport.

The Fly-in/Drive-in and Auto Show will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday, June 29. There’s no admission and the public can come before 9 a.m. as breakfast is served beginning at 7 a.m. Lunch is served later through 3 p.m.

There will be antique and specialty aircraft on display and a silent auction. A worship service is scheduled for 10 a.m.

The auto entrance fee is $5. Awards will be given to the top 20 entrants.  There will be street rods, sports cars, custom cars, unrestored classics and more. Planes will be coming and going all day, weather permitting.

The event is sponsored by Country Road Classics and the Aitkin Flyers Club. Free root beer floats will be available, sponsored by Peoples National Bank.

For more information on the auto show, contact Mike Macioch at 320-684-2170 and for the aircraft display, contact Dale Johnson 218-838-0390 or Jim Larson, 218-820-8898.


Story and photos:  http://www.messagemedia.co

North Pole man pleads guilty to shooting fireworks at Army helicopters

FAIRBANKS—A North Pole man who shot fireworks at Army helicopters flying over his house and shined a spotlight at them pleaded guilty Friday to a misdemeanor count of assaulting U.S. military personnel performing official duties.

Federal Magistrate Judge Scott Oravec accepted Daniel Lee Slayden's guilty plea in U.S. District Court in Fairbanks.

Court documents say Slayden bought a home in a residential area near North Pole in March 2013 and became irritated at helicopters from nearby Fort Wainwright performing night flights around 1,000 feet above ground. There was no mention of interference from low-flying aircraft in the legally required disclosure statement when Slayden bought the house, and the sellers refused Slayden's request to rescind the purchase.

Slayden, according to a recorded conversation, complained to the Public Affairs Office on Fort Wainwright, after which some helicopters appeared to have shifted south. Some helicopters, however, were still flying over Slayden's house and at an altitude that Slayden estimated as below 500 feet.

Slayden goes on to say in the recorded statement that friends of his who worked on Fort Wainwright told him helicopter pilots knew who he was and that their flights irritated him and that they continued deliberately flying over his house. Slayden declined an offer to have the allegation followed-up by providing the names of his friends.

Slayden admits that, starting last fall, he began to shoot fireworks and shine a spotlight at helicopters flying over his house. He said the helicopters' bright lights shined into his windows and that he wanted to "give it back to them," according to statements.

Slayden said he shot mortar-based fireworks or aimed a spotlight at helicopters on roughly 12 occasions but did not necessarily aim the mortar tubes at the aircraft. He estimates the fireworks reached 100 feet into the air.

The court document states uniformed Army pilots confirmed fireworks exploded about 300 feet below their aircraft and that a spotlight interfered with their operations — including causing blackouts to night-vision goggles — during the reported time frame.

A search of the Slayden's home resulted in the seizure of several fireworks, four cardboard mortars for launching fireworks and a 12-volt spotlight.

Under a plea agreement, Slayden would be sentenced to three years probation, fined $12,500 and would forfeit for destruction any instruments used in the offense. The maximum penalty is a one-year prison sentence and $100,000 fine.

Sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 2.

Source: http://www.newsminer.com

Incident occurred June 27, 2014 in Mayhill, Otero County, New Mexico

Helicopter accident southwest of Mayhill:   Hard landing due to weather conditions

Two people were transported to an area hospital after a privately owned helicopter made a hard landing due to weather condition in the area southwest of Mayhill Friday evening, a New Mexico State Police spokesman said.

Lt. Emmanuel T. Gutierrez said four people were on board the helicopter at the time of the hard landing.

Gutierrez said a man and woman were transported to an area hospital complaining of non-life threatening injuries.

He said NMSP officers were notified by an Otero County Sheriff's Office dispatcher of the helicopter accident around 6 p.m. Friday.

Otero County Sheriff's Office deputies and area volunteer fire department emergency personnel initially responded to the accident.

Gutierrez said the accident happened at 58 Mule Canyon Road near New Mexico State Route 130 and Miller Flats Road southwest of Mayhill.

He said no one was killed in the accident.

Gutierrez said the privately owned helicopter is owned by Jay Arabians.


Source: http://www.alamogordonews.com

I-Team investigates Maryland State Police helicopter transition

Watch Video:  http://www.wbaltv.com
 
Video Transcript:    THE I-TEAM HAS LEARNED THAT THE SLOW TRANSITION OF THE MEDEVACS INTO THE POLICE FLEET HAS PROMPTED A BUYBACK. DAVID COLLINS HAS MORE. 

THE AVIATION INDUSTRY IS A TIGHT-KNIT GROUP. 

A COMPANY HEARD HORROR STORIES ABOUT THE TRANSITION AND DECIDED TO GAUGE INTEREST IN A SALE. 

THE TRANSITION OF THE CUSTOM BUILD MEDEVACS INTO THE MARYLAND STATE POLICE AGING FLEET IS SO SLOW, IT INSPIRED A BID FROM A COMPETITOR IN LOUISIANA. 

A CONTRACTOR REACHED OUT TO ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY SENATOR TO BROKER THE OFFER TO "ACTUALLY PURCHASING THE AIRCRAFT FROM THE STATE AND LEASING THOSE AIRCRAFT BACK FOR OPERATIONS BY OR FOR THE MARYLAND STATE POLICE." 

REACHED BY PHONE, THE CONTRACTOR SAYS THAT THE OFFER STANDS, BUT HE HAS NOT HEARD BACK FROM ANY STATE OFFICIAL. THE HELICOPTERS ARE FLYING OUT OF FREDERICK MUNICIPAL AIRPORT, THE EASTON AIRPORT, ST. MARY'S COUNTY AIRPORT, AND THE SOLACE BURY AIRPORT. -- SOLACE BURY AIRPORT. 

THE TRANSITION IS EXPECTED TO TAKE TWO YEARS AND THEY ARE STILL ON SCHEDULE TO COMPLETE IT WITHIN THAT TIMEFRAME. THE RETIREMENT DATE FOR THE FLEET IS THIS YEAR. TRAINING HAS BEEN A CHALLENGE FOR PILOTS. SOME HAVE HAD TO REPEAT TESTING. THE NEW FISCAL YEAR BEGINS NEXT MONTH AND THE BUDGET AUTHORIZES 10 ADDITIONAL PILOT IS EDITIONS. THE NEW HELICOPTERS AFTER UNDERGO MORE INSPECTIONS THAN EXPECTED. 

THIS AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVE, FOR EXAMPLE, HIGHLIGHTS THE PRESENCE OF CRACKS, WHICH COULD LEAD TO LOSS OF CONTROL OF THE HELICOPTER. MEANWHILE, THE CURRENT AGING FLEET MUST BE MAINTAINED UNTIL THE TRANSITION IS COMPLETE AND THE COST OF MAINTAINING A DUAL FLEET IS GROWING. SINCE DECEMBER 2012, THE STATE BOARD OF PUBLIC WORKS HAS AUTHORIZED $2.3 MILLION IN REPAIRS TO THE FLEET. THOSE REPAIRS INCLUDE ENGINE AND GEARBOX OVERALLS. MARYLAND STATE POLICE ANNOUNCED TODAY THAT A NEW MEDEVAC WILL BE PUT INTO SERVICE TOMORROW.

Watch Video:  http://www.wbaltv.com

Norman Perry relinquishes chairmanship of Martha's Vineyard Airport (KMVY) commission

Under fire by the Dukes County commissioners, Mr. Perry stepped back from a lead role, but will remain on the airport commission.

Norman Perry, chairman of the Martha’s Vineyard Airport Commission since April, relinquished the chairman’s post at a meeting of the airport commission Friday morning. Mr. Perry notified his fellow commissioners of his decision to step down from the leadership post but remain on the commission in an email late Thursday night.

“I have assumed his position as chair,” vice chairman Constance Teixeira, said at the beginning of the airport commission’s regular monthly meeting.

Ms. Teixeira set a stern tone. “The meeting today will be governed by Roberts Rules of Order, which gives the chair custody of who is allowed to speak,” Ms. Teixeira said. “Anyone not acknowledged by the chair will not be able to speak at this meeting. There will be some changes in committees. At this time I’m not ready to make those changes.”

Newly appointed airport commissioner Christine Todd, who is also a county commissioner, questioned the process. The airport commission has no bylaws spelling out the process of succession.

“I was under the impression that we would elect a new chair,” Ms. Todd said. “I’m just wondering what the process is.”

“The process is, the vice-chair steps up, and we elect a new vice-chair,” Ms. Teixeira said.

The meeting was tense at times, but less confrontational than meetings held earlier this year, which drew widespread criticism of airport commissioners by members of the county commission.

Members of the county commission have been highly critical of the airport commission for its handling of several public disciplinary hearings involving an airport employee.

At a meeting on June 18, Dukes County Commission chairman Leonard Jason Jr. asked the seven appointed members of the airport commission to resign. The longtime county commissioner modified his call in a letter dated June 19 addressed to the airport commission in which he suggested that commissioners find something else to do. Mr. Jason asked for a response by July 1.

County manager Martina Thornton, county treasurer Noreen Mavro-Flanders, and Mr. Jason attended the Friday morning meeting.

After attending to routine airport business, commissioners approved a response to Mr. Jason’s June 19 letter in which he asked the  airport commissioners to consider another line of civic duty.  Commissioners did not discuss the text of the letter or read it aloud.

Ms. Teixeira, Mr. Perry, Peter Bettencourt, Denys Wortman, and James Coyne voted in favor of the response. Ms. Todd voted against sending the response, and newly appointed airport commissioner Richard Michelson abstained.

Ms. Todd said she has already sent her response. Mr. Michelson, a former airport employee, said he intended to send his own response.

Following the meeting, assistant airport manager Deborah Potter refused to respond to an oral request for the letter. She asked that all requests for public documents be submitted in writing. She did not responded to a written request from The Times by the end of the day Friday. The Times also requested a copy of the letter from the county manager. That request was also not met by the end of the day Friday.


The airport commission also distributed a draft of an airport employee policies and procedures handbook for discussion. Airport policies and procedures have been a sharp point of contention during recent disciplinary hearings and meetings. Beth Tessmer, a nine-year airport employee who was twice suspended and then fired earlier this year, has contended in a workplace discrimination lawsuit, that the airport commission did not follow disciplinary procedures established for Dukes County employees.

Airport commission attorney Susan Whalen, speaking by conference call, advised commissioners to keep the document confidential, not to distribute it electronically, and not to share copies with outside advisors. Though distributed at a public meeting in open session, she maintained it is not a public record, because it falls under an exception to the Massachusetts Public Records Act concerning formulation of public policy.

“I would recommend that the commissioners keep their copy privileged and confidential,” Ms. Whalen said. “You’re obligated to maintain the confidential record of the public body.”

“I don’t see anything that is so secret, secret, that no one else in the world can look at it,” said Mr. Michelson, who has spoken forcefully in recent meetings about the need for a policies and procedures manual.

The commissioners agreed to review the document, and send comments to Ms. Potter by email.

The meeting was not without its lighter moments.

The commissioners agreed, at the suggestion of Mr. Michelson, to send an electronic survey to all airport stakeholders, including tenants, employees, pilots, and others, to gauge what they think about airport operations. Ms. Potter suggested using the popular Internet based survey software known as Survey Monkey.

“I can see the headline,” said Mr. Coyne. “‘Commission creates monkey committee.’”


Original Story:  http://www.mvtimes.com

Fairborn volunteer information for Dayton Air Show

FAIRBORN — Skyhawk Athletic Club parents and students volunteering for the Vectren Dayton Air Show June 28-29 should remember these items:

The morning shifts are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and the evening shifts are 1-6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. A Fairborn City Schools bus will transport volunteers from Fairborn High School to the air show promptly at 7:30 p.m. Please be at FHS by 7 a.m. The bus will pick up afternoon shift volunteers at FHS, leaving at 12:30 p.m. so please be at FHS by 12 p.m.

Adults are asked to wear their “Hawk Pride” T-shirts. Extras will be available at the main volunteer tent. Students will have bright yellow program shirts provided to them on the bus. They will also be available at the main volunteer tent.

Volunteers must have their pass to enter the air show and also to park in volunteer parking area. Instructions and maps will be provided immediately upon arrival.


Source:  http://www.fairborndailyherald.com

As Marshfield Municipal Airport (KGHG) expands, couple agree to sell their home

MARSHFIELD – With barbed-wire fencing and a taxiway buffer creeping toward their backyard, a Woodbine Road family said the $15.34 million improvement project at Marshfield Municipal Airport left them with little choice but to sell their home.

Thomas and Pamela Scott this month agreed to sell their home at 23 Woodbine Road to the airport commission for $315,000, most of which was funded with federal money.

The home is one of three properties at the end of Woodbine Road and Old Colony Lane that were identified in 2005 for possible acquisition. It’s the second to be purchased for the expansion project.

The Federal Aviation Administration provided an $11.34 million grant for improvements to the town-owned airport, which is managed by Shoreline Aviation. The state pitched in $1.4 million, and voters at a special town meeting in 2011 approved $200,000.

The newly reopened runway was shifted 190 feet west of the previous surface, widened by 25 feet and extended 300 feet. An additional 300 feet of paved safety buffer was added at each end, providing 3,600 feet for takeoffs and 3,900 feet for emergency landings.

Airport manager David Dinneen acknowledged that the fence enclosing the airport and taxiway protection zone are “very close” to the Scott home, which will be demolished.

“We went through the process and offered to purchase the home, and they accepted,” he said. “We struck a good deal with them. They’re happy with the decision, and we’re happy to be able to use the property to create a buffer.”

While Thomas Scott said he’s glad his family received fair market value for the home, he’s disappointed that officials put them in that position to begin with.

“We’re leaving under duress. We’ve been told by medical professionals that the dangers and the risks outweigh the attempt to tolerate or adjust to the situation,” he said Thursday. “You can’t argue with noise levels that exceed federal guidelines and toxic fumes 50 feet away. … And to think airport commissioners, who are my own neighbors, denied that there would be a problem.”

Airport officials have said the project is necessary because improvements will bring the airport into compliance with FAA safety and design standards.

The zoning board in 2011 granted a special permit for relocating and widening the runway. Town Counsel Robert Galvin said part of the airport property already existed in a residential zone prior to the expansion.

 “All they did was change the nature of use, and that was through a special permit,” he said. “There’s absolutely no doubt in my mind that there has been no further incursion than what (the board) approved.”

Galvin said no neighbors appealed the board’s approval of the permit at the time. “They should have taken issue with it in 2011,” he said. “They had a legal obligation to do that.”

Scott said none of the plans as presented included the adverse details his family is experiencing.

I'm not anti-transportation and I’m certainly not anti-business, but some serious negligence existed here,” he said. “Perhaps the consultants involved presented the decision-makers with a very different description of what would happen compared to what has happened.”

Scott did credit Dinneen for his handling of the situation, calling him a “professional who took a different approach” from other airport officials.

“He was proactive and made it possible for us to exercise our option to relocate,” Scott said. “If it weren’t for him, I don’t think we would have had any options other than to file for injunction.”

Story and photo:   http://marshfield.wickedlocal.com