Vista Field did not drop the air race. The Air Race Classic dropped Vista Field. About a year ago, the Port of Kennewick passed a resolution to serve as host to the 2013 Classic Air Race. The time for due diligence was then. What are the costs involved? What does it take to run a national event?
Now that planning is well under way, the ignorance of the port commissioners and staff has forced the Ninety-nines (the supporting group of women pilots) to seek a better location. The port has submitted a draft document to the state auditor for interpretation of legality. At a time when work should be under way to get Vista Field ready for fifty-five planes, the port is asking for nonrelevant financial information and stewing about nonexistent legal questions.
The port is demonstrating poor management of the citizens' assets under the guise of financial oversight. The fact that Vista Field is an asset to the community was evident by the use of the field by the helicopters protecting orchards from the rain and the new construction of the Laser Eye Institute. The port has been lax in not learning how to run an airport. Instead of listening to developers who are lusting after land, the commissioners should be educating themselves about the management of its premier asset.
Kathy White, Kennewick