Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Ellen Hess attended virtually every Airpark Advisory Board meeting for the last 14 years, although she never served as a member. She announced Wednesday, Nov. 7, that she would no longer be in the audience.
Ellen Hess is back. Sort of. It has been about a year since the lone, longtime fixture at Airpark Advisory Board meetings last attended one of the quarterly meetings. She has been on vacation for much of that time since her late husband, a former board member, passed away. And while most of the board and city officials expressed joy at seeing Hess take a seat Wednesday, Nov. 7, in the chambers at City Hall, it was short lived. She shared the news when she took to the dais at the end of the meeting. “I’m kind of sad,” Hess said. “I’m not sure this is part of the minutes. I’m moving.” The quiet chambers fell silent. Hess attended virtually every meeting for the last 14 years despite never having served on the Airpark Advisory Board or been …
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Rick Porraro, a Citizen's Academy graduate and contributor to Mayor George Cretekos’ election campaign, was given a contentious seat on the volunteer board.
If you are looking to fill a coveted seat on a contentious volunteer advisory board and are looking for a resident from a nearby neighborhood, would you go with someone who lives a couple blocks away or nearly four miles? Rick Porraro, a Citizen's Academy graduate and contributor to Mayor George Cretekos’ election campaign who lives nearly four miles from the airpark, was awarded a vacant seat on the Airpark Advisory Board over other residents who live closer in a unananimous vote by the City Council Thursday. He was one of six applicants vying for the seat and the only one who made a contribution to the mayor’s election campaign. Porraro, who gave $500 to Cretekos’ election campaign, submitted his application to be on the board Feb. 29, …
Thursday, March 15, 2012
City Leaders debate who will serve as the next volunteer member of the board at their meeting Thursday.
When it comes to filling the open seat on the Airpark Advisory Board which way will the city council sway. Will it be a neighbor? Elaine Granata and Lauren Hallahan live nearby the airpark and speak at its public meetings. They both applied. Or what about an industry insider? Bruce Brock worked as a pilot for Delta and before that was a Lt. Col. in the Air Force. City leaders will have to choose one out of the six candidates that have filed applications to serve as a volunteer on the Airpark Advisory Board. The board offers insight into airpark matters and meets four times a year. Two of the five current board members live close to the airpark, said Bill Morris, Marine and Aviation director. He would like to make sure the next member lives…
Sunday, February 12, 2012
Two neighbors have filed applications and are seeking membership on the volunteer board.
- THE NEIGHBORHOOD FILES
- Jared Leone
Sunday, February 12, 2012
Participation in the quarterly Airpark Advisory Board meetings from residents is typically nascent. Ellen Hess, a neighbor near the Clearwater Airpark, is normally the lone member of the audience at those afternoon meetings at City Hall. Not this time. About six residents came out to the Feb. 1 adivsory board meeting, which could be considered a full house. And two of them have hopes of serving on the volunteer board. “This is the most people we’ve had over the last several years at any one meeting,” said Bill Morris, director of the city's marine and aviation department. “We normally get one or two guests... I thank you for coming.” The turnout could be some of the smoke still fanning from the fumes of the dust up during a tense public …
Saturday, February 4, 2012
Bob Gibson, a Clearwater resident who owns a plane and lives near the airpark, shared his thoughts about the runway expansion.
Saturday, February 4, 2012
As a resident of Clearwater... I don't own a boat and never use the marina - but I understand that facility serves a number of Clearwater residents with that interest. My home is in the Coachman Ridge Subdivision, which is walking distance to Bright House Networks Field. I have never attended a baseball game there - and often have to endure the noise from the explosions of the fireworks after the game - but I accept that the field and its supporters were there long before I moved into the neighborhood. I don't visit many of Clearwater's parks (although I do ride my bike on the Ream Wilson Trail) - but I know many Clearwater residents use and enjoy the parks. I don't golf, but I don't opbject to a golf course for those who participate in …
Friday, February 3, 2012
The runway at Clearwater Airpark could expand up to 800 feet after city leaders approved the plan at their meeting Thursday. The work could be complete in seven months.
The Clearview Lakes subdivision where Joe Morgan lives is beautiful he says. There's just one thing. The airplanes that sound like atomic weapons going off each Saturday morning. And now that city leaders unanimously approved adding up to 800 feet of runway at Clearwater Airpark at their meeting Thursday, Morgan worries he is going to be saddled with more sound. "I can't afford to move," Morgan said. "Who can afford to move?" The discussion at the City Council meeting was more civil than one nearly a month ago where residents and pilots clashed over the plan and nearly got into a fist fight at one point. Both sides said they were there for safety reasons. The $1.8 million project would not bring larger planes to the airpark; the runway …
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
City leaders will vote Thursday on whether or not to extend the runway at Clearwater Airpark by up to 800 feet.
City leaders hope their discussion about a plan to add up to 800 feet of runway at Clearwater Airpark will be less confrontational than one held Jan. 10 that nearly devolved into fisticuffs at one point. About 1,700 mailings were sent out to neighbors near the airpark to let them know about that meeting, said Bill Morris, director of the Marine and Aviation department. About 40 people showed up, including pilots and neighbors, to talk about the $1.8 million plan. It got heated when a resident called the chairman of the Airpark Advisory Board a liar. "We will keep it more civil than I think it got at one point Thursday," Mayor Frank Hibbard said. That's when the city council meets to vote on the project. If a proposed runway extension at …
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
A meeting seeking public opinion about a proposed runway expansion at the Clearwater Airpark nearly devolved into a fistfight Tuesday night.
For Joe Morgan, Saturday mornings can be like a nuclear bomb is going off. Morgan, a school bus driver who typically awakes at 5 a.m., likes to get up around 7:30, sometimes 8 a.m. on the weekend. But as close as he lives (in the Clearview Lakes subdivision) to the Clearwater Airpark, sometimes sleeping in isn’t an option. “It sounds like Hiroshima over my house,” Morgan said during a meeting about a proposed runway expansion. “The residents are tired of the noise. That’s all there is to it.” The stakes are higher residents said, maybe that’s why the public meeting about adding 800 feet of runway at the Clearwater Airpark nearly devolved into a fist fight at one point Tuesday night. The City Council should take a vote on the issue at the …
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
After setting regular hours and adding more hangars recently at the airpark, officials are looking to upgrade the runway.
No, bigger planes will not be able to land. Just want to get that out of the way first. However, large planes that are already allowed to land, but currently don’t, might start taking to the landing strip at the Clearwater Airpark if plans to add 800 feet to the runway go through. The plan has been in the works for more than a decade, but there has been no funding for it, said Bill Morris, director of the city’s Marine and Aviation Department. The idea is to make the runway safer for the type of planes already allowed to use it. The runway is rated for planes that weigh 12,500 pounds or less and have a wing span of 49 feet or less. “While neighbors will see an occasional ‘bigger plane,’ they are planes that could have landed at the airpark…