The Oct. 10 edition of the American-News included a story about a disagreement from Kevin Wald, CEO of Specsys Inc., as to how the city of Montevideo and Chippewa County award the airport management contract. Since then, the city and county have affirmed an airport commission resolution, stating the policy should not change.
At the Oct. 7 Montevideo City Council meeting, Wald told the council that he felt the contract should be bid out, and that he was confident he could save the city thousands of dollars with a better contract if he won the bid. He also expressed concerns about the manner in which the contract was awarded.
“It is my belief (that) the current business selected for this lucrative contract was a friend and prior acquaintance of airport commission member(s). No other business, nor any public listing occurred prior to giving the contract to a friend of the airport commission,” Wald wrote in an email to Janice Nelson, the city attorney.
The council passed a motion saying they would wait until they had written clarification from the county on their position, as there was some confusion during the discussion.
The following night, the Montevideo-Chippewa County Airport Commission unanimously passed a motion requesting the city and county affirm the commission’s decision to keep the airport management contract the same.
“The airport manager is not chosen solely for their ability to offer least cost services, but rather, as most managers are, chosen for their ability to provide specific management duties which benefit the airport,” the resolution reads.
At the Oct. 15 Chippewa County Board of Commissioners meeting, the board reviewed the resolution passed by the airport commission and passed a resolution supporting it.
At the Monday, Oct. 21, Montevideo City Council meeting, the council affirmed the resolution passed by the airport commission.
For more on this story and others subscribe or pick up a copy of the Montevideo American-News.