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After Airport Meetings, Democrats Insist that New Deal Have Substantial Long-Term Benefits

(WHITE PLAINS, NY) After Monday’s Committee of the Whole meeting with Frasca & Associates L.L.C., the firm hired by the County to assist in the airport privatization Request for Proposal process (RFP), Democratic members of the Board of Legislators have made clear that they have expectations that must be met.


“As a member of the Airport Advisory Task Force that helped to select this firm, I have stated from the start that any outcome must wholly benefit Westchester County taxpayers for years to come – not just fill a short term budget gap,” said Legislator Ben Boykin (D-White Plains). “Unlike last time around, we must seek bidders in a fair and open bidding process. If that means that the best thing for the taxpayer is no deal, then that is an outcome we should be pleased with. Any transaction must be sensitive to all stakeholders - our taxpayers, airport customers, surrounding residents, while protecting our environment. I look forward to working with Frasca & Associates L.L.C. throughout this comprehensive process.”


Frasca & Associates L.L.C. was selected from 12 bidders by a Bi-Partisan Airport Advisory Task Force to support the County’s efforts to find a potential partner for privatization of the Westchester County Airport.


"The Board of Legislators insisted that any deal to privatize our County's airport had to result from a fair and open bidding process; and that the process had to be run by airport experts who also had been selected by a fair and open bidding process,” said Legislator MaryJane Shimsky, Chair of the Committee on Infrastructure and a member of the Airport Advisory Task Force. “We are now working with our chosen airport experts to structure the process by which we solicit offers from potential suitors. As we embark on this next part of the process, we must insure that any deal we consider is in the best long-term financial interests of Westchester County's taxpayers; and that it protects the traveling public, the neighboring communities, and the environment. In my mind, only deals that properly address those four concerns -- the County's long-term financial interests, the traveling public, the neighboring communities, and the environment -- are worthy of consideration."


“The FAA’s timeline on completing any deal like this in the past has been counted in years, not months. What the County Executive attempted to do last time around was hasty and unprecedented,” said Legislator Catherine Parker (D-Rye). “We must have a fair and open bidding process that results in a multitude of options. With neighboring residents, taxpayers, the environment, and the traveling public all needing to be kept in mind, any deal must be a net gain in every category for it to be worth making. So far what I have seen from this process when it was attempted elsewhere has me skeptical of what the timeline outlined to us has been and I am not interested in rubberstamping any deal that will help plug a hole the County Executive created,” concluded Parker.

 

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