Augusta Aviation Commission splits on new chairman

 

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly reported aspects of the nomination process.


The governing board for Augusta Regional Airport failed to elect a new chairman Tuesday after a tie vote could not be broken.

The 12-member Augusta Avia­tion Commission split its vote to elect either Lowell Dorn or Cedric Johnson, both standing members of the commission.

The commission’s lawyer determined its charter did not include rules for breaking a tie and that Mayor Deke Copenhaver, who serves as the ex-officio commission member, did not have authority to do so.

Dorn, a seven-year veteran of the commission, was chosen by a special nominating committee earlier this month. Johnson was nominated by commission member Paulette Curry during Tuesday’s meeting. He has served on the commission since 1998 and was chairman from 2003 through 2008 during the construction of a commercial terminal.

“This is very disappointing in my opinion. We had due process with balanced representation.” Chairman Jay Forrester said. “There was ample opportunity for everyone who wanted to serve to throw their name into the ring, and no one did but one person.”

Curry said she was not at the committee meeting to nominate Johnson because the meeting time was scheduled without regard to when she was available. She said she sent an e-mail notifying the four-person committee of her schedule.

The committee’s chairman, Randy Sasser, said Curry did not respond to his e-mails or phone calls to see whether she could make the meeting.

Also at Tuesday’s meeting, Kellie Kenner-McIntyre, Richmond County’s next solicitor general, was elected vice chairwoman after being nominated by the committee. 

The commission will revisit the chairman issue in January. Its current officers will remain in place and Forrester will remain chairman.

 

Topic page: Augusta Regional Airport

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