St. Clair County Board holds trump card on MidAmerica Airport

November 24, 2013 

A bipartisan group of St. Clair County Board members have been beating the drum that the County Board should control MidAmerica Airport. Well, they have their chance on Monday.

The board members have been stymied in their attempts to get a full board vote on switching control from the appointed Public Building Commission to the elected County Board.

But Monday night the board holds the trump card. The County Board, not the commission, will have the final say on the airport's proposed $5.5 million budget for 2014. A "no" vote on the budget as presented by the PBC would make it clear that the County Board can take charge.

Those who vote to approve the budget will be affirming County Board Chairman Mark Kern's contention that the PBC should remain the airport authority. County Board members who vote to approve the budget will again be ceding their authority to appointees who are not answerable to the people.

We don't think the airport budget will be blocked on Monday anymore than we think the board would approve a resolution giving control of the airport to the County Board. There are too many yes-Democrats on the board willing to vote whatever way Kern tells them.

Still, the budget vote is an important referendum on control of MidAmerica Airport. The people of St. Clair County will find out Monday where their elected board member stands.

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