• Bill would transfer control of Charlotte airport to the state

    By: Mark Becker

    Updated:

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - A bill is on file in the North Carolina legislature that would transfer control of Charlotte's airport to a state airport authority and it's already raising some questions in Charlotte.

    "It's said that if it isn't broken, don't fix it. And sometimes when you begin to tinker with something you do more harm than good. We certainly hope that's not the case," said City Councilman Pat Cannon, hours after that bill was officially filed by two Charlotte area lawmakers Wednesday.

    Cannon said he would like more time to look at some of the questions lawmakers have brought up about the airport, including oversight of the day-to-day operations of the airport.

    "It's too important an asset to have a part-time oversight and therefore we think the authority would provide full time oversight," said Sen. Bob Rucho, a Charlotte Republican who introduced the bill in the Senate on Wednesday.
    The airport has been a centerpiece of Charlotte's growth and development and one of the men who brought his company here says it is still a very important asset.

    "It was one of the most important reasons we came to Charlotte," said Fernando Aguirre, former CEO of Chiquita.
    Aguirre is no longer with Chiquita, which moved to Charlotte from Cincinnati in 2012, but he said the most important thing isn't who runs the airport authority but who runs the airport from day-to-day.

    "Whether it's city, state or even federal, I don't think it really matters as much as who is the person running the airport," Aguirre said.


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