Poll: Should the Georgia Senate Take Over the Atlanta International Airport?
The Atlanta International Airport is among the busiest on the globe. It brings in $34.8 billion in revenue and is the source for 63,000 jobs on its premises. It’s hugely successful, but there’s a problem — investigations and indictments reveal some troublesome operations taking place at the airport. The Georgia Senate wants to take ownership of the airport away from the City of Atlanta. Should they do so?
Issues at the airport include vendor selection controversies and dubious resource procurement strategies. Atlanta’s airport management has suffered from corruption in the past; it’s unclear how pervasive the problems are currently.
The City of Atlanta believes this is nothing more than government theft. Republican State Senator Burt Jones (who introduced the legislation) claims otherwise. He believes the airport can only be saved through state government oversight. Jones plans to change the airport’s management structure to ensure fair competition among vendors and distributors.
Jones understands this is a difficult conversation. The city claims that a state takeover of the airport would cause too much economic instability for the region to handle. It would also damage relations between the capital city and the state government (perhaps beyond repair).
The legislation narrowly passed in Senate Transportation Community with a vote of five to four. Jones expects the bill to enter the Senate floor shortly. An amendment giving Atlanta until July 1, 2020, to formulate a joint government plan was added to the proposal. This would prevent the state from completely absorbing the airport.
Allegations against the airport’s previous corruptions are concerning, but they may have been resolved by now. Additionally, the financial security of the Atlanta airport is crucial to the economy of surrounding areas. Do you think the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport needs state management? Share your thoughts!