AOPA Regional Representative Craig Dotlo appeared at a public meeting in Mamakating, New York, to reinforce AOPA's mission to keep general aviation airports open. The town is seeking to purchase and operate privately owned Wurtsboro-Sullivan County Airport. Dotlo described the benefits of public airport ownership like FAA funding through the Airport Improvement Program and control over local zoning and development around the airport. "It has been AOPA's experience that publicly owned airports generally have more longevity than privately held airports," Dotlo said. A private developer also is seeking to purchase the airport, indicating that he intends to also keep the airport open. There are about 60 aircraft based at the field, which has three grass runways and one paved runway.
September 1, 2005