After hearing testimony from both Dodge County and the Heart of Georgia Regional Airport on Thursday, April 18, Oconee Judicial Circuit Court Judge Sara Wall ruled in favor of the airport on Monday, April 29.
Originally, on Friday, March 29, Judge Wall granted a temporary restraining order from Dodge County that prevented the Heart of Georgia Regional Airport Authority from selling a 45 (plus or minus) acre tract of land the authority owns on the Ocmulgee River. The restraining order stated that the authority could not take any action affecting the authority’s real or personal property which will have the effect of disposing or encumbering assets, changing the financial status of the authority, approving any contracts or accepting any bids to dispose of property, employment contracts, enter into any leases or otherwise bind the authority to any extended obligations, in particular any sale of property on the river, disposition of glide slope bids, airport manager’s contract, disposition of the revolving loan fund and any action on the Dynamic Paint Solutions lease. Dodge County commissioners asked their attorney, John Harrington, to issue the injunction at a called meeting on Wednesday, March 27, just two days before the airport authority was to possibly sell the river property on March 29 by sealed bids.
According to the county, the commissioners believed that because the county gives the airport approximately $1,000.00 per month for operating expenses and pays approximately $92.836.00 per year on a bank note for the airport runway extension, that they have a vested interest in the sale of the property along with watching out for the citizens of Dodge County.
Judge Wall, in finding in favor for the airport, said that the county was unable to make their case.
Really? You don't say. SO the county had no proof to bring an injunction in the first place. It was all made up and presented by the county attorney who didn't have a shred of evidence to present to the judge during the hearing. How is that? I thought the big news story over at 13WMAZ made it seem like the county stood to lose a great deal if this wonderful 40 acre river vacation land was sold. Huh?