Originally created 08/31/02

Meeting addresses Navy airfield plans



The Navy will hold a public meeting in Burke County on Sept. 12 to share information on its plan to establish a new airfield for its F/A-18 Super Hornet attack jets.

Although the Navy has narrowed its list of seven sites to two preferred locations - both in North Carolina - meetings still are being held at each venue, including Burke County south of Augusta.

"Technically, all the sites are still under consideration, but the Navy has already stated its preference," Navy spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Joe Carpenter said.

The meeting at the Burke County Office Park Auditorium, 715 W. Sixth St., Waynesboro, includes an open information session from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 7 to 9:30 p.m.

After months of study, the Defense Department issued a Draft Environmental Impact Statement in early August recommending further consideration be given only to two sites: Craven and Washington counties in North Carolina.

The Burke County site near Girard, Ga., provoked opposition from residents and politicians, who cited concerns over excess noise and devalued property. Opponents included Gov. Roy Barnes.

A final decision on the site is expected early next year, Lt. Cmdr. Carpenter said.

Reach Robert Pavey at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 119, or rpavey@augustachronicle.com.