ASHEVILLE- A new law transferring Asheville Regional Airport from the city to an independent agency has caused a few headaches.
Some of the pain comes from unanswered questions about whether the state or the city will be left responsible to pay $2.2 million for a land transfer mandated by the law.
The rest of the headache comes from conflicts between the city and the airport on who can serve on the airport’s governing board.
But Asheville resident Miles Davis says, “welcome to my world.”
Davis says the recent pain caused by the airport transfer is nothing compared to the last 15 years of pain Davis has experienced driving back and forth to Atlanta for cheaper airfare.
“Who is going to serve on the airport board? Who gives a rip? How about get some cheaper flights for God’s sake?” said Davis.
“All these politicians go running around and boasting, ‘we are doing this and that for the people.’ All their talk is not even worth an airline bag of peanuts. Give me a call when I can fly across the country out of Asheville and it not be at least $150 more expensive than Atlanta.”
Davis visits his mother four times a year in Los Angeles, Calif. and has never been able to fly out of Asheville, because Atlanta has always been cheaper, even including the gas money required to get to Atlanta.
“A three hour drive to Atlanta seems a lot some times to save some money, but it is just a matter of principle,” said Davis.
“I know some people will say I should support local. But that’s all fine and dandy if you can afford it. I would love to fly local. You think I love driving to Atlanta? Besides the Asheville airport is not local anymore is it? I mean it is located here, but not operated by the city. Well I don’t know what it is. What is it? This airport stuff is confusing, thankfully I have a three hour drive to Atlanta next week and a 20 minute TSA security line wait to think about it all.”
Davis suggests the Asheville Regional Airport should change its name to the Independent Regional Airport (IRA) to make the transfer clear to everyone involved. Davis’s wife however pointed out the new airport name and abbreviation may leave some people confused how exactly they would be flying in and out of their retirement accounts.
“Better make it clear there is no Roth involved here,” said Davis’s wife Betsy.
Davis will make his first of four trips to visit his mother tomorrow, who is turning 95 years old on Wednesday. Davis hasn’t purchased his mother a present yet, but is hoping to find a last minute gift at the airport gift shop.
“I know an airport gift shop gift doesn’t sound classy, but how many years can my mother honestly have left to be resentful about it,” said Davis.