By Donna Westfall – July 6, 2016 –
Just last month, to much fanfare and hoopla, the Border Coast Regional Airport Authority held its much anticipated ground breaking ceremony at the Crescent City Airport. Hosted by the Chairman of the Authority, Del Norte County Supervisor, David Finigan, the event drew speakers from the district representative for Congressman Huffman, the field representative for Assemblyman Jim Wood and others.
Finigan stressed that the project began with a dream in the year 2000 and that collaborative efforts made the project come to fruition. Finigan said, “All of you people said it wouldn’t happen… pffit.”
Well it turns out that all of those people who said the new terminal building would not be built were right after all and Finigan was wrong. This week we learned that one of the partners Finigan was counting on for part of the financing has backed out of the deal, making the entire project for the building dead in the water.
The question is why was the groundbreaking ceremony held way before all of the financing was in place? Why was the ceremony held in May when the actual construction was not going to begin until months later?
Very reminiscent of the City of Crescent City awarding the contract to Wahlund Construction to build the $43 million sewer plant six months before going out and getting the public’s support through the required Prop. 218 vote. Is this standard operating procedure for this area?
To us, the answer is simple. Finigan was in a tight race to keep his seat on the board of supervisors. With four challengers, he needed to show that he had accomplished something before the June election. We believe that this was his was to be his way of showing that he had accomplished something during his 20 years on the board. He even touted this as an accomplishment in several of the debates.
Now that is all in shreds. The board of supervisors is faced with the hard task of either finding new partners or coming up with some other way of financing the terminal. This did not have to happen if Finigan had taken his time to make sure he had all of his ducks in a row before holding a ceremony for a new terminal that is now in severe jeopardy.
As of now the new terminal is terminal.