County pushing change at airport

By Andy Winemiller -

DOBSON — County commissioners will consider restructuring the airport authority on Monday.

Included in the consent agenda for the Surry County Board of Commissioners is a proposed motion which would allow County Manager Chris Knopf to engage the city of Mount Airy with regard to amending the inter-local agreement between the two entities which sets up the governing authority at the Mount Airy-Surry County Airport.

“Following a lengthy review, the Finance Committee finds that it would be in the county’s best interest to revisit the existing inter-local agreement,” wrote Knopf in correspondence to the board.

The current structure of the airport authority was created in 2010. Surry County appoints five members to the seven-member board, and Mount Airy appoints two.

In the past, some county officials have raised concerns regarding the city’s unwillingness to provide any financial support at the airport, while retaining its board appointments.

Changes to the inter-local agreement must be agreed to by both the county and city, and Monday’s motion will simply empower Knopf to begin negotiations to alter the agreement.

County commissioners will also consider a lease agreement with the town of Dobson. The agreement would allow Dobson to lease a corner of the lot on which the historic courthouse sits for one dollar per year.

The town has plans to construct a digital message board which will be used to announce events. The message board will take the place of banners which used to be used to publicize events. The town board has already approved the agreement.

The board will consider an agreement with Sturgis Web Services. The company currently handles the online payment system for tax collections. The new agreement will end the county’s relationship — through Sturgis — with PayPal and shift to Forte, another company which processes payments.

Monday’s meeting begins at 6 p.m. at the Surry County Government, which is located at 118 Hamby Road in Dobson.

By Andy Winemiller

Andy is a staff writer and may be reached at 415-4698.

Andy is a staff writer and may be reached at 415-4698.

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