2006-06-29 / Opinion

Reader Offended at 'Cheap Shot'

To the Editor:

I take offense at what I consider a cheap shot (as stated in last week's paper by my neighbor in Evergreen Shores, Jay Hoult) at one of our finest area citizens, Paul Fullerton. I can sympathize with Mr. Hoult's zeal in suggested economizing, and agree with most of his letter where he pointed out examples of overspending found at various levels of government, however, it's my personal belief that the county airport probably follows certain national standards when it comes to facility upgrades and security. Isn't the FAA dictating a lot of security upgrades? Don't we turn away customers on a regular basis due to lack of hangar space? A bit of research, attending some of the many related meetings, or talking with Mr. Fullerton in person, might illuminate the uninformed.

I've never had the impression that Paul is trying to create some sort of hoity-toity empire up there; rather, these improvements encourage and invite more visitors, create ancillary spending, and are all part of the long-term goal to increase tourism and business in the area. Most of the cost was paid by federal grant, with only one percent in matching funds being local.

In closing, my husband asked me to include the following thought for your consideration: Would you rather exclude Mackinac County from spending these federal and state funds and forget improving our airport so that the money can be used downstate, where all the emphasis is anyhow? Should the airport fail to meet federal aviation standards or lose potential revenue and close, then "they" can all just fly out of Pellston and Chippewa County instead. I'm really sure that will end up helping employment and tourism in Mackinac County.

I'm confident there's quite a few Island residents who could testify on behalf of Paul - emergency trips he's made, the holidays he works, and his community spirit, which is evidenced on both sides of the water. Personally, I think Paul Fullerton does an amazing job and we are lucky to have his leadership at the county airport.

Kimberly P. Hagen

St. Ignace

Return to top

Click here for digital edition
2006-06-29 digital edition