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Thu, Sep 28, 2023

Ogden-Hinckley Airport (OGD) Travesty Drags On

Of Court Cases and Mayoral Races

In February 2022, Ogden, Utah city officials proposed a five-year program by which to pay for the demolition of aging aircraft hangars on the Ogden-Hinckley Airport (OGD). The measure was part of a larger plan to, ostensibly, make the airport more attractive to commercial airlines and air-travelers, thereby improving the Ogden’s financial status.

The city’s program was challenged, however, by hangar lessees, who brought a federal lawsuit alleging improvements made to the hangars by leaseholders stood to be unconstitutionally appropriated by the city in the absence of compensation or equivalent recourse.

The OGD hangar lessees’ lawsuit, which sought injunctive relief in the form of a stop to the county’s attempts to summarily terminate long-running hangar leases, was heard in U.S. District Court in Salt Lake City. In its filing, the Ogden Regional Airport Association (ORAA) alleged the city of Ogden, by means of refusing to renew leases, intended to illegally abscond with improvements made to the OGD hangars by lessees.

Comes now September 2023 and a correspondence from ORAA president emeritus Edward McKenney setting forth:

To all,

“You may recall after the Judge dismissed our case in the Federal court over a year and a half ago, the thugs from Ogden City filed for Attorney Fees to the tune of $80K! We have finally received the order stating the Federal Judge denied the Attorney fees. Special thanks to our attorneys at the time from the Durbano Law firm. See the attached ruling. This is very good news that the six-hundred-pound gorilla has left the room. Keep in mind this is real money Ogden City paid to their outside counsel and won't be getting it back. It is our understanding the Mayor wants our case to go away, so this will be a black eye, expense-wise, for the City, and will hopefully speed the City's movement on changes to leases and Title 8. We have been informed they are working on these changes because of the impact these ordinances are having on existing stakeholders and inhibiting new business.

“Additionally, your ORAA leadership held a very good meeting with mayoral candidate Ben Nadolski this week.  He was the number two vote-getter in the Ogden City Mayoral Primary. Ben displayed a good understanding of the issues affecting the airport and was very outspoken about the need for change, including how the airport is managed. Very encouraging.

“To balance our assessment of the potential candidates for Mayor, we have a meeting scheduled with the other mayoral candidate, Taylor Knuth next week to learn more about his interests going forward. We will keep everyone posted on that meeting and many other actions being taken by ORAA. 

“As a reminder, please avoid taking the bait from the airport manager. He is pressuring anyone looking for a lease to sign documents immediately that give your rights away. Change and better terms are on the horizon.”  

Parties wishing to help offset the ORAA’s significant attorney fees and peripheral legal costs are gratefully invited to visit the Go-Fund-Me page set up on the Association’s behalf at: www.gofundme.com/f/jsrt9u-ogden-regional-airport-association-legal-fund.

FMI: www.facebook.com/groups/1673325282841553/

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