Sat, Aug 20, 2005
Amarillo Invests In Bell Plant
The city of Amarillo, TX, believes in the new presidential
helicopter VH-71A so much that lawmakers are willing to invest $27
million in taxpayer money.
"What we will see is potentially 19 Marine One helicopters,"
Bell plant leader Roger Williams said at a special city council
meeting Thurdsay. "These are literally the President's Oval Office
in the sky," Roger Williams, site leader for Bell's Amarillo plant,
said during an afternoon special meeting of the city
The requested money would go toward building a new ramp, and
assembly/flight operations building at Bell's facility in Amarillo.
Because of security requirements surrounding the project, the
facilities will be built away from the main Bell plant in
"This is another step. It's so much further beyond what was
initially envisioned in 1998," Commissioner (Robert) Keys told the
commission. He was on the City Commission when the tilt-rotor plant
was initially approved for city economic development money.
But not everyone in Amarillo is on board with the project.
"I have a question to whether or not this is a wise policy to
put so much resources of the Amarillo Economic Development Corp.
into one company," Amarillo resident Allen Finegold said, quoted by
the Amarillo Globe-News. "What we will have is a situation in which
essentially all efforts of economic development funded by the city
will rise and fall with one corporation."
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