Events Set To Land at Airport

Ohio County commissioners on Tuesday approved spending $6,500 in hotel-motel tax fund money for two different upcoming events at the Wheeling-Ohio County Airport.

The first amount was $5,000 for a free event to showcase the airport’s newly expanded terminal building museum and to bring in World War II aircraft. Airport Manager Tom Tominack said the money will be used to cover the cost of fuel for the planes and for the pilots’ hotel rooms. While details of the event still are being worked out, the dates have been set for July 15-22. During this same week, Tominack plans to allow the public to tour the control tower – something that hasn’t been done since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, he added.

”It’s a good opportunity to thank people for their support and educate them about the tower,” he said, referring to people protesting the closing of terminals across the country. Such closings by the Federal Aviation Administration have since been delayed because of those protests, he noted.

The second free airport event, the annual Transportation Show, garnered $1,500 and will be held Sept. 29. This event typically includes a classic car show, displays of aircraft and other methods of transportation.

Meanwhile, the commission also approved a $5,000 hotel-motel tax fund expenditure toward West Virginia’s 150th anniversary-related events happening next week in the county. Commissioner Tim McCormick said the commission is chipping in money much like the city of Wheeling and Wheeling Convention and Visitors Bureau. It was also noted county offices would be closed June 20 in recognition of West Virginia Day.

They also approved a $5,000 request from Circuit Clerk Brenda Miller, who plans on using the money for trolley transportation for county clerks and deputy clerks to tour the county during a state training meeting in August.

They also approved pay requests related to the airport runway safety project: $14,361 to Michael Baker Inc. for engineering services; $1,500 to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Services for permits; and $6,173 to Michael Baker Inc. for rehabilitation of surfaces and installation of a security gate at an access road.

Another hotel-motel tax budget request was granted: $500 for the West Virginia Emergency Management Agency Conference occurring today and Thursday in Wheeling.