What if MidAmerica's red never ends?

October 9, 2013 

The red continues to pile up for MidAmerica Airport -- a $5.9 million loss in 2012 including amortization and depreciation. The fact that the amount is less than it was the previous year is cold comfort to the taxpayers paying these bills each year.

The trail of red stretches back to 1998 when the airport opened, and the auditors expect it to continue for years to come. What if the red ink never turns to black?

The County Board members should already be debating that question. But there is no real discussion about that because years ago the County Board handed control -- and basically a blank check -- to the appointed Public Building Commission.

Finally some County Board members, both Republicans and Democrats, want to take back control, but they can't even get a vote on their proposal. County Board Chairman Mark Kern, who apparently is willing to subsidize thee airport with county-collected taxes indefinitely, is blocking the measure.

The 2012 deficit tally is another reminder of why the elected County Board, which is accountable to the people, and not an insulated, appointed board, should be deciding the path forward.

Chairman Kern: Let the vote proceed.

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