The Highland County Board of Commissioners gave a vote of support to the Highland County Airport Authority for its possible purchase of a hangar built by Ray Fenner and owned by his family.
Highland County Airport Authority President Bob Jones and vice president Bob Prosek attended a Wednesday commissioners meeting to request the board’s support in obtaining the hangar, which houses several planes at the county airport.
Prosek said Fenner, who built the hangar in 1997, currently lives in Florida. According to Prosek, the airport authority has negotiated with his family to buy the hangar for $125,000.
Prosek said there are currently seven plane owners renting space in the eight-bay hangar, bringing in a monthly income of $1,300, which Prosek said could be used to pay off a 30-year bank loan.
Prosek added the airport authority would negotiate a clause allowing the authority to pay off the loan early with no penalty.
Highland County Board of Commissioners President Shane Wilkin said he was reluctant to say the authority could request money from the county’s general fund, expressing concern about the county’s potential loss of more than $800,000 in Medicaid-funded managed care organization tax revenue next year, and Prosek said the authority won’t require any money from the county.
Prosek said the airport authority is authorized by Ohio Revised Code to purchase hangars on its own, and assured the commissioners the revenue from the hangar exceeds estimated loan payments.
Wilkin asked Prosek if those renting space in the hangar would be willing to commit to a three-year lease, and Prosek said he would ask them, adding that the current renters seemed to have no problem with a one-year lease.
The commissioners agreed the deal was reasonable, and voted 3-0 to give their support to the airport authority for the purchase.
Also Wednesday, commissioner Terry Britton offered condolences on behalf of the commissioners to the family of John Weller, a prominent community member who recently passed away.
Wilkin reported crews were able to repair the HVAC system at the Highland County Prosecutor’s Office, and said as of Wednesday morning it was 71 degrees inside.
Commissioner Jeff Duncan said the county is looking at its options regarding possible new landscaping around the Highland County Courthouse after common pleas judge Rocky Coss raised concerns about a cigarette butt being tossed in the mulch and smoldering.
The commissioners said there’s no word yet on state legislators’ override attempts on Ohio Governor John Kasich’s veto of an amendment to the state budget bill providing for a long-term solution to the managed care organization tax revenue loss.
Commissioner Jeff Duncan said the state senate was set to vote Wednesday, but had postponed the vote. Wilkin said the board has been in communication with State Sen. Bob Peterson and Cliff Rosenberger, speaker of the Ohio House, on the matter.
The commissioners also held a bid opening for street repaving on Massie Street in Greenfield, a project funded by Community Development Block Grant moneys, and passed a number of resolutions regarding budget reconfigurations at the Highland County Probation Department.
Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570, or on Twitter @DavidWrighter.