Kennewick — The Port of Kennewick may give the public a chance to vote on whether they want to pay what it would take to keep Vista Field open.
Port commissioners asked staff Tuesday to start the process to conduct an independent study on Vista Field and other options, such as upgrading the airport or closing it.
The information would then be presented to the public, and port Executive Director Tim Arntzen said the public could vote in an advisory fashion in February or April. Its an option the port hasnt used in at least a decade.
The commission unanimously decided to reject Mike Shannons proposal to be the airports fixed-based operator and end negotiations.
Shannon and the port started negotiating about nine months ago on a contract to make Shannon the fixed-based operator at the small airport near the Three Rivers Convention Center.
Shannon, of Shannon Dental, would have provided services such as aircraft repair and maintenance and flight lessons and oversee fueling and hangar and tie-down rentals.
In addition, the port would have turned over management of the airport to Shannon, giving him the responsibility for recruiting businesses to Vista Field.
Port Commissioner Don Barnes said the port and Shannon do not even have a potential framework for an agreement. There has been ample time to reach an agreement, he said.