Timothy Hahn guest column: Carson City Airport board selection questioned
To the Carson City Board of Supervisors:
I have to question what just happened in the selection of the next member of the Carson City Airport Board, ask why you completely failed to do your jobs initially, and then completely failed to follow the process according to the rules the second time around? I can only believe this is small town politics at its worst. Not just at its worst, but twisted to allow the selection of a personal preference over a qualified applicant.
You failed to properly vet the applications the first time and told a qualified applicant he didn’t live within the required distance, when in fact he did. You re-opened process with the same requirements and that gentleman re-applied and proved he was eligible. In fact he was the only qualified applicant to apply. The opening specifically states, “The term, a manufacturer position, expires Oct. 1, 2017. To qualify, applicants must be from within a three-mile radius of the Carson City Airport, but not a fixed base operator at the airport; however if no manufacturer representative applies, the Board of Supervisors may appoint a member of the general public.”
A qualified applicant did in fact apply, and for the second time was the only qualified applicant. This time you called upon the attorney who advises the airport board for an improper opinion. Mr. Tackes advised you could completely ignore the rules since it was the second time around. Well, I don’t believe that’s true. You failed to properly vet the applicants the first time, which caused the second round to be required. The opening specifically stated a member of the general public couldn’t be appointed unless there was no manufacturer applicant.
You deliberately set up a personal preference and broke the rules to make that selection. The Airport Board has the authority to hire, fire, and replace the advising attorney. Why that attorney had any say what-so-ever in the selection of a board member is an ethics question the District Attorney should be taking a close look at. I believe you broke the law in make the selection this way and demand answers to these questions.
Timothy Hahn is general manager of Carson Aviation Services.