200 Attend Nov. 27 Wilsonville City Council Public Forum to Testify on Airport Development Impacts
A special meeting of the Wilsonville City Council held on Nov. 27, 2018, to discuss the proposed expansion of the Aurora State Airport drew a standing-room audience of 200 attendees. A total of 53 citizens testified during a three-hour-long public forum, including area residents, business managers and elected officials who presented a wide range of divergent views on the proposed $37 million grant application to by the Oregon Department of Aviation (ODA) to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to extend the airport runway from 5,000 to 6,000 feet.
The City Council held the record open until Dec. 3, allowing members of the public to submit additional written testimony that resulted in a total of 133 submissions. A compilation of the testimony and a hearing transcript (available later) and video recording are available online at www.ci.wilsonville.or.us/AuroraStateAirport.
The City Council sought to compile a record of public testimony to be presented for consideration by state legislators and the Governor, members of the Oregon Congressional delegation and the FAA prior to prospective retroactive approval of the runway extension when the legislature’s Joint Emergency Board meets on Friday, Dec. 14, 2018, 8:30 a.m., in Hearing Room F of the State Capitol Building, Salem, to consider “Item 40. Department of Aviation – Aurora State Airport Runway Extension.”
The proposed project has generated significant interest and varying perspectives regarding the potential merits, benefits, and impacts, of the proposed runway extension. While located near but not under the jurisdiction of the City of Wilsonville, neither the Aurora State Airport sponsoring agency ODA nor the local-government land-use authority of Marion County has held a public hearing on the proposed airport expansion. Since the public has had only limited opportunity to provide comment to government officials on this current proposal, the City Council sought to provide a public forum that advances Oregon’s Statewide Planning Goal One, Citizen Involvement.