Thursday, January 28, 2016

How the airport was won.

JJ is providing a history lesson this week on how the Jackson municipal airport came to be.  Some old minutes revealed some interesting nuggets of information.  Jackson nearly lost the Air National Guard units to other airports as Hawkins Field was becoming obsolete.  There was wrangling with the Pentagon over how much money would be contributed by the military.  Then there was the matter of the $3 million bond issue.  The Jackson Airport Commissison embarked on an advertising campaign to promote the bond referendum.  It is not known if Frontier Strategies got the advertising contract or if Butler Snow was the bond counsel. Some highlights of the minutes are:

*Commission discussed producing a one-minute radio commercial that would promote a bond issue funding airport construction.  The proposed script state:

A modern jet-age airport is essential to the growth and development of Jackson as a major city, the commercial and administrative nerve center of Mississippi.

Jackson can obtain federal assistance, CAA money, to help build a modern airport... but ONLY if Jackson puts up a like amount.  To meet this requirement, the Airport Commission is, in effect, asking the City of Jackson to LEND $3 million for this purpose.  The $3 million can be obtained only through a bond issue.. and this bond issue is what you will vote for on Augusts 26.

This bond will be repaid with funds received from the sale of the present airport lands, and from the operation of the new jet-age airport to be built in Rankin County.

Even under the most unfavorable economic circumstances, we feel certain that getting the new airport.. and all it means to Jackson's growth.. WILL NOT costs any more than that necessary for maintenance alone at Hawking Field.

If the modern airport is not built now, it will be necessary to spendMUCH MORE than this half-million dollars for maintenance work alone on the present, inadequate, out of date airport.

When you are casting your votes for progress on Tuesday, August 26, be sure to mark your ballot FOR the airport bond issue. (p.2)
 * (August 15, 1957) Air Force denies request for more funds.  The Department of Defense will only pay for  3,000 feet of the proposed 8,000 foot runway. Jackson would have to find funds to build the remainder of the runway.  General Winston Wilson (USAF) stated "he had never agreed to the expenditure of Air Force funds for an entire runway".  He "express surprise" that the airport commission "understood otherwise".  He said the DOD could only provide $3 million as it was a national limitation for all such expenditures. (p.4)  Senator Stennis said Jackson did not have the money to build the extra five thousand feet of runway.

*(June 13, 1957).  The Adjutant General expresses concern that Jackson has not yet purchased the required parcels of land to proceed with the airport project.  He said the planning could not take place until the city executed the long-term lease with the MANG. The Air National Guard had already requested F84F's from the DOD.  Just one problem: Hawkins Field could not handle these planes. The Jackson squadron would have to fly out of Meridian if Jackson did not build a new airport.

F84F. Source: Wikipedia
*(April 22, 1957) Adjutant General says Washington promised $4.5 million for construction of Air National Guard facilities at the new airport. (p.28)

*(August 15, 1957) Commission is told Pentagon will probably move 183rd Tactical Recon Squadron from Hawkins Field to Gulfport if no progress is made.


Anonymous said...

Damn! Don't see anywhere in this where the State of MS GAVE the airport authority or the City of Jackson the airport. Or even the ability to build the airport. Nor did the state pay for the bonds for the airport.

Still looking for the answer to the question about "what the state giveth the state can take away." What did the State 'giveth'?

Anonymous said...

Miss. Code Ann. § 61-5-7
actually 61-5 in its entirity.

Thanks for playing...

Anonymous said...

State gave nothing. Rankin agreed to let Jackson annex the airport in exchange for not annexing a giant swath of land adjacent to Jackson in Rankin County, which they were going to do. Jackson incurred the millions in bonding to build and improve the airport. Rankin didn't pay a dime. Now after it is built and modernized, Rankin wants to take it. Its that simple.

Anonymous said...

Nothing is set forever in stone. Rankin is going to build a waste treatment plant also. Get over it.

Anonymous said...

@ 3:46. You need to spend your allowance better and buy you a new section of the MS Code. Or if all your knowledge comes from Googling, get you a better search engine.

61-5-7 only states that a Municipal Airport Authority has the power of eminent domain.

The 61-5 section is the municipal airport authority law. Yes, the state establishes the fact that a municipality may establish a municipal airport authority and it may establish a municipal airport. But that does not mean that because the state "Allowed" the establishment of an airport the state established the airport.

Read on once you have saved up enough of your allowance. Get down to the 30's sections - where they talk about the ability to create a "joint authority". For your simple mind let me explain. Those sections allow for a municipality to enter into a joint agreement with other entities (counties, other cities, the state, etc.) if they want to. But the terms (see 61-5-33, 35 & 37) define the ability to enter into such arrangement and how. In all cases it requires a JOINT agreement; it does not allow for a takeover.

Exactly what has been reported that the Rankin County real estate developers and the Bond advisors have been pushing for would be such a 'joint agreement' but they have left off the two words - jointly agreed, and an agreement.

Thanks for playing, though. Next time study up before you open up.

Anonymous said...

Of course State law is forever inalterable. Supermajorities. Republican Governor. Don't bother playing, you'll lose.

Anonymous said...

Fascinating stuff.

Thanks for the history lesson Kingfish.

Generals, Powerful Jackson Businessmen . . . Senator Stennis even.
What a great visual . . . I can only imagine these guys in a smoke filled Conference room during late 1950s jackson.

Anonymous said...

....right 9:28. With a cartoon in the corner showing Brian Williams and Kingfish claiming "I was there!"

Anonymous said...

Just look at Josh Harkins list of donors. Then connect the dots as to who is going to end up with all of the legal and engineering work when he wrests control of JMAA.

Anonymous said...

Who on the list of donors are you referring to? Also, is Harkins going to be the new CEO or on the board? NO! If contracts are awarded to any contractors Harkins won't be doing the awarding you idiot. Come up with a better theory than that.

Anonymous said...

No. Harkins is not going to be the CEO. Nor on the board. That would, in fact, be against the law since it would have been created while he was in the legislature.

But - betcha he and his development company will be in a good position with the new board to be able to get the lucrative contracts that come out of the airport if he is able to get his ill-conceived takeover completed.

He will not be doing the awarding, you idiot. He will be doing the receiving.

Anonymous said...

7:01 Do you even know what Harkins does for a living? That is quite a reach. the ends to which some will jump to on this site are staggering. How about addressing the central issue here, should the airport be regionalized? Still nobody has given a cerebral explanation as to why not. What say ye 7:01?

Anonymous said...

2:04 - nobody has given a cerebral explanation as to why the Airport should be taken over by the state, other than the folks in Rankin County want it. They don't like the fact that it is run by a black controlled government that has minority set-asides in its contracting program. They don't like the fact that folks that they don't influence control something today. They don't like the fact that Mississippi doesn't have enough air travelers to bring in more airlines and daily flights.

But all those things that they don't like does not give a reason as to why the airport should be taken over by a board appointed by the Governor when the airport was built and is owned by the City of Jackson. Just because Rankin Countians want control of it doesn't provide a 'cerebral explanation" as to why Harkins' bill has merit.

You ask a good question but it seems to me more basic - why should the airport be regionalized? And also under what authority? If it applies to the Jackson Airport what else should it apply to?

And yes - btw - I do know what Harkins does for a living. Its not quite as much of a jump as many comments on this site, but yes it was still a jump. He develops and manages real estate, mostly in the Lakeland corridor area. The fact that the airport authority just entered into an option to lease several hundred acres for development which he will not participate in makes it at least a little jump.

But I for one don't think that is the reason for his bill. I think it has to do more with certain individual(s) that left employ in the Sillers building and went to another high rise firm a few miles further north. Harkins is just the enabler.

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).

Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.

In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS.

Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

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