Letters to the Editor

Airport compromise shouldn't be dismissed

Recently, Leo Brennan presented a compromise for lengthening the runway at the Hilton Head Island Airport.

He began by pointing out many glaring misrepresentations in the airport master plan. He concluded that the runway could be at a compromise length of 4,720 feet, eliminating only those aircraft classified as very large corporate models.

That's a small sacrifice to keep plans within the airport footprint, stop the clear-cutting of trees, do away with the need for land acquisition and prevent destruction of the quality of life for a whole community. The list goes on and on.

But I have to conclude with the large dollar savings, especially at a time when headlines tell us about a potential tax increase on Hilton Head.

The result? Nothing but a sweeping of said compromise suggestion under the table with an "it's too late, discussion closed" reaction from the county and town councils. Is this not the high-water mark of arrogance and irresponsibility?

I suggest a thorough examination by an independent authority as to the correctness of the proposed compromise, a re-addressing by both councils and a referendum for the entire island as to which direction we should go. Time is not expiring, as you might hear. If the airport were that unsafe, perhaps it should have been closed until we found the proper outcome. Savannah is not that far away.

Let's close this discussion with a vote and see where the majority really is.

Dick Ellis

Hilton Head Island

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