Marshall meets with Air Force about Emanuel airport

by | November 26, 2004 12:00 am

At the request of U.S. Representative Jim Marshall, Air Force representatives Colonel Jeff Harrison, Chief of the Air Force’s Ranges and Airspace Division, and Major Bill Crowe, the Air Force’s Chief of Airspace Policy came to Washington to meet regarding the impact of their proposed change to the Bulldog MOA A and B.

During the meeting, Marshall discussed the negative impact the proposed change in the Air Force’s air space restrictions would have on the airport, noting that limitation of flights in and out of the airport would seriously impact the utility of the airport to attract new business and maintain the existing economy. Moreover, the Swainsboro-Emanuel airport is nearing completion of a very significant, very expensive renovation and expansion.

“Col. Harrison and Maj. Crowe came to Washington at my request specifically to meet with me about this issue and I’m very pleased at how receptive Col. Harrison was to working with us to minimize or eliminate any economic impact on the use of Swainsboro’s airport,” said Marshall.

Also last week, the House passed the Fiscal Year 2005 Omnibus Appropriations Act. The legislation wrapped eight of the 13 FY 2005 spending bills into one large bill. Among the eight spending bills of the Omnibus was the Transportation, Treasury Appropriations Bill which contained $1,145,000 Million for an Instrument Landing System (ILS) at the Swainsboro-Emanuel Airport.

“We are appreciative and thankful for the monies allotted to our airport,” said Swainsboro/ Emanuel County Airport Manager Roff Sasser. “The ILS system is the culmination of all the work we have already done. The runway extension, new taxiway and terminal relocation all were necessary for us to qualify for this landing system. With very little local monies spent, our airport will become one of the top rated small airports in the country.” Sasser continued.

Sasser also commented on the diligent work done by the airport committee and its chairman Ken Warnock. “Ken has worked very hard to bring these improvements to our airport. He has done an outstanding job and created numerous economic development opportunities for our area,” Sasser concluded.

“I am absolutely committed to developing Swainsboro’s airport facility and I believe we need to protect and grow this airport because it can be a critical economic engine for Swainsboro and Emanuel County. I think Swainsboro is ideally suited to be a regional hub for medical and other services, as well as an economic center,” said Marshall.

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