MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

February 26, 2013

Challenge airport’s classification

By Melony Carey
Food by the Book

— Local officials must fight a reclassification of Davis Field Airport because federal funds may hang in the balance in future years.

The Federal Aviation Administration reclassified Davis Field from a regional business airport to a local airport last year.

Local officials are joining with other airport operators across Oklahoma to challenge a federal asset study that resulted in the reclassification.

The downgrade raises some concerns over the FAA’s methodology in the asset study.

The classification of regional business airport helps when our area is being considered by companies wanting to expand or relocate here.

For instance, large jets can land at Davis Field.

That’s sounds like so much more than what a local airport can handle.

The new classification creates shackles when corporations are looking at our market.

Local officials are concerned that federal funding may decrease if the reclassification stands.

Though they have been assured that federal funding is not tied to the classification, it very much is cause for concern.

No one knows what the future holds.

Just a few years down the road, bureaucrats could make funding decisions just by looking at the classification of the airport.

We have to protect our interests now.

It would be a mistake to wait and see what happens.