Welcome to Retroman40's World!

No Spencer Co Airport

IMPORTANT NOTICE - I am no longer a Spencer County resident having relocated to Kissimmee, FL in December 2014.  As such I will not be updating this site but will continue to keep what I have up as historical reference.  Now that John "Airport" Riley has been elected Spencer County Judge Executive, this issue may rear its ugly head again.  If there is anyone interested in putting more into this effort I will happily transfer this domain.  Please contract me and we can make the necessary arrangements.

The first real political issue I got involved with was an ill-fated effort to build an airport in Spencer County.  It meant so much to me that I ran a "nospencercountyairport.com" website in late 2007-2008.  I still maintain the URL just in case the subject rears its ugly head again.  If you've been directed here from that address I welcome you to Retroman40's World and hope you'll look around a bit.

It's a fair question why on earth I think this issue could ever come back to light.  Well, one of the key advocates FOR the airport, John Riley, has been elected Judge Executive and takes office in January.  While it is unlikely that he could come up with the funding for an airport to be built, I feel it's important to remember that it took a petition with over 3,000 signatures to get Mr. Riley off the airport bandwagon.  Needless to say, that issue left a serious bad taste in my mouth.  

I feel it's also important to remember who led the charge against this boondoggle - Ronald "Woodie" Cheek, Mr. Riley's (defeated) opponent.  Yes, I voted for Woodie and don't mind admitting so.  For whatever reason, the people of Spencer County made their bed and now they are going to have to sleep in it for the next four years.

The creation of an Airport Board by the Fiscal Court was a huge mistake.  Somehow they all fell for a sales job by a couple people who were interested in bringing an airport to Spencer County.  They fell for it because they never did any homework themselves on the issue.  The proponents (all ten or so of them) liked to point to the Federal Government paying to build the airport.  What they failed to mention was that if built, the county would be on the hook to operate it - forever!  I joked at the time that we'd be paying someone to watch grass grow and then to cut it!

Fortunately as the people came to learn what it really meant they started making it clear to their Magistrates that this was a non-starter and it died the death it deserved.

To this day I am quite proud that I played a role in preventing this disaster from ever happening.  There is one amusing story; one of the people who strongly supported the airport (who's name I won't mention since it doesn't matter) had to nerve to send me - a private citizen - an open records request.  I didn't know whether to laugh or what.  I wanted to send him back a replay that the open records laws only apply to the government, but after speaking briefly with one of my Coast Guard lawyer friends I decided that simply ignoring the guy was the best bet.

Review: June 27, 2017
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