The Oregon Dept. of Aviation operates airports all around the state. Can you name any of the ones in Central Oregon? Half the airports are east of the Cascades. ODA, as they’re referred to in Salem, has an oversight board, called the Oregon Aviation Board. The “Board” meets in-person and via Zoom every 2 months, and you can watch. YOU can even comment, via e-mail or during the public comment period. The next board meeting is coming up, next Thursday, Feb. 3rd. Here’s a link to the agenda. https://www.oregon.gov/aviation/AVB/Pages/Next.aspx
Five agenda items are sure to interest you:
- Thanks for service of retiring Board Member Doug Ferguson. Many of you know Doug, a 182-back-country driver, here in Eastern Oregon. Doug advocated for “The little guy” and boldly gave a measure of plain ‘ole common sense to many issues that other board members knew too little about. Consider sounding-off in the public comment period that follows.
- Director’s update. This “Usually” includes legislation regarding Oregon aviation, ODA funding/staffing challenges, major efforts/projects, and other high-level visibility of “What’s going on”. Do YOU know about what’s going on?
- Planning and programs manager update. Pavement, and other airport improvement/maintenance projects – in process and coming up. Other major programs. Hey, what about that crumbling asphalt at Prospect State?
- Approval of COAR Grants and Grant Funding Authorization. The Critical Oregon Airport Relief program spends your aviation fuel tax dollars collected by the state and FAA for airport improvements and maintenance at state-owned airports and qualifying “Other” airports. Listen to where it looks like the newest tranche of funds will go. Will any of it make its way to Central Oregon?
- Operations – State Airports Manager Update. Listen to Tony Beach, state airports manager, give the latest on how things are going “On the ground” at the state-owned airports. Tony is a general aviation pilot, and former manager of the Corvallis Airport. He gets around.
Can’t make it to the meeting, but wanna be heard? You can submit your own “Public Comment” via e-mail to the Board. I believe it will be read to the Board during the public comment period, so it’s not just the Board members that hear it. Whatcha got? This link gives you the e-mail address for your submission. https://www.oregon.gov/aviation/AVB/Documents/2022/02_03/Public%20Notice%20AV%20Board%20Meeting%2002.03.2022.pdf