The Airport Commission Says No All Business Proposals Or Leases
Months ago, airport users brought forth inconsistencies in the lease agreements to the commission.
Since then, the city has hired a law firm to standardize all the leases at Harriman West Airport.
The Airport Commission agreed to take no action on all business proposals or leases until the lease and rental system have been revamped.
Iberkshires.com reports, at Tuesday's meetingChairman Paul Boillat said
"We hope to be able to do this in March and there have been a number of people who have come forward and have expressed interest in the hangars and office space,". "We need to thoroughly review everyone's proposal."
Administrative Assistant Michael Canales said once these regulations are redone, they will be handed out to the commissioners, tenants and potential tenants for input.
Flight school operator Alex Kelly, has been seeking permission to operate an aviation business at the airport for the past three and a half months, was not very happy with this information.
I berkshires.com reports that Kelly said:
"I have been given the runaround from day one here. I am a businessman and I have spent a lot of money here. I have lost a lot of money here already," he said. "I have no agenda. I just want to operate a business."
Kelly reiterated accusations against former Commissioner Trevor Gilman, who he felt attempted to block his ultimate purchase of TeamFlys, with which Iberkshires.com reports that Kelly said:
"It is insane what has happened here, and I don't understand how it got to this point,"
Much of Kelly's statements were also present in a post he made on social media months ago directly calling out Gilman, (Gilman was removed from the commission after an investigation began into irregularities in the fuel account), Although any wrongdoing on Gilman's part is still under investigation airport, manager Bill Greenwald and mechanic John Werner, who he said wrongly performed aircraft maintenance.
The post led to a lot of comments with some defending Kelly's claims while others railed against the flight school owner.
Some accused Kelly of sexual misconduct.
That accusation of Kelly appears to be true. Kelly was convicted in 1997 of raping two teenage girls in 1986 in Connecticut. He was sentenced to 16 years in prison but was released after 10 years on good behavior in 2007.
Kelly's past conviction was not mentioned at the meeting, but Kelly did ask the commission if there was a reason they seemed to be stalling. Iberkshires reported the Kelly said:
"I don't understand why a town would do everything they can to run a businessman out who is trying to bring a bunch of money here," he said. "I am coming to you with honesty and respect so let's just be honest what is the deal? Do you want business here or not? "Obviously there is something going on here that I don't understand. I have the right to understand what is going on."
The commissioners only reaffirmed that they would take up the proposal at a future meeting.
Kelly flat out asked if he would be given permission to operate his school before the end of Tuesday's meeting. Boillet said no.
Canales recommended that if Kelly was finished with his comments that the Commission adjourn.
Werner, the mechanic Kelly accused of improperly repairing an aircraft, spoke during last calls for open forum. Werner said his work was consistent with the aircraft's manual and that the FAA had no issue with his actions.