• Leaders head to Raleigh over airport authority concerns

    By: Jason Stoogenke


    RALEIGH, N.C. - Charlotte city leaders took the fight to Raleigh on Wednesday to try to slow down or stop the state from handing Charlotte Douglas over to an airport authority.

    Eyewitness News was with them and asked state leaders if an airport authority is definite.

    The bill is in the house, so Eyewitness News spoke with House leaders, including the speaker, they are not calling it a done deal, but it sounded like they are close.

    Speaker of the House Thom Tillis basically said Wednesday that the airport authority is going to happen.

    "I think it is likely that we will move to an authority," said Tillis.

    The questions are when? What would the authority look like and how big would Charlotte's role in it be?

    State Rep. Bill Brawley expects to have something solid to vote on by the end of this session around June 7 – if not, it could go to short session next spring.

    "It would, but I expect that would wrap something up before we leave," said Tillis.

    Tillis said he is not going to force it.

    "We are going to move at a pace that makes sense," he said.

    City council's Andy Dulin took the trip to Raleigh, heard that and is hopeful.

    "He is in no real rush. If it gets pushed past this legislative session that is OK," he said.

    Tillis expects some action this year, whether that is creating an airport authority directly or creating a body to form the airport authority.

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