December 20, 2014
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Protecting the public by withholding documents

To the Editor:

The Rhode Island Airport Corporation goes through a monthly ritual to "protect the public" by meeting in executive session to discuss most sensitive financial issues. Using state statutes that are designed to protect the early unveiling of property negotiations where the state is trying to buy or sell properties, the Airport Corporation uses that technique to meet monthly to discuss such items as airline agreements under a cloak of secrecy.
Now airport management has taken this practice one step further. They are refusing to release FAA produced documents claiming that the release of these documents would harm the public in some way. Does that make any sense?
The Warwick City Council is moving toward patching up its relationship with the Airport Corporation. Some issues have been settled. But many remain. There will be more hearings, more public meetings. The goal will be to work together.
But as long as the Airport Corporation calls for the protection of the public by withholding obvious public documents such as FAA dispatched findings, the mistrust will continue. This practice as well as the vague calls for secret meetings must stop.
We can work together only through sharing not by throwing up barriers at every turn.
The Airport Corporation will soon be releasing its "Benefit Cost Analysis" for the runway extension, a required FAA document. It will also release its half-year financials that were prepared in early January. The date for the release of that document is March 21, 2012. That is almost three months after the fact.
It will be interesting to see if the holdback of these documents protected the public during the negotiation between the Warwick City Council and the Rhode Island Airport Corporation. I doubt it.

Richard Langseth
Warwick


Comments
4 comments on this item

It's truly disgusting that a Government entity as corrupt as our state can actually own and operate an Airport. We all know it's a large money laundering facility.

But thank you for the Letter Rich. Bravo on Wednesday for standing up for the people of Warwick. We need all the help we can get, the clapping seal union members seem to think our community needs to be ruined just so they don't have to sit on the bench at the union hall. If union guys don't wanna get layed of or benched, guess what? Go work for a private company.

Give me a break.

Correction: Non-Union Shop... SCABS, you know the guys you always call the inspectors on, just cause theyre not union...

Actually we are asking the trade unions to help us out to make sure the CCRI ball fields get properly funded.

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