Treece airport proposal could get Council committee hearingWritten by Sarah Ottney | Managing Editor | email@example.com
The local investors interested in taking over operation of Toledo’s airports from the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority may soon get a hearing with Toledo City Council’s economic development committee.
Dock Treece of Sylvania and his sons Dock David and Ben are working with committee chairman Rob Ludeman’s staff to set a date for an informational hearing to discuss the idea.
“The issue is out there and, for full disclosure and transparency, I think it’s worthwhile to have an informational meeting to see what the possibilities are, if any,” Ludeman said. “If it turns out it’s not a concept that’s going to work at this time, so be it, but at least other Council members and the public can come and hear what all parties have to say.”
The Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, the mayor and members of the city administration would also be invited to be part of the discussion, Ludeman said.
The committee is currently looking at a date in late April or early May, Ludeman said. Committee meetings are open to the public.
Dock is president of Treece Investment Advisory Corp. and his sons are both partners in the family-owned and operated Toledo firm. The Treeces are also Toledo Free Press contributors.
The Treeces have been researching the feasibility of privatizing Toledo’s regional airport operations for several years.
“We think this meeting will be extremely beneficial for the City and area stakeholders to understand what alternatives are available besides the lackluster Port Authority management currently in place,” Dock David told Toledo Free Press.
In November, the Treeces launched a website, www.toledoairports.com, where they intended to lay out their plans for public review and input before a formal proposal is made to City Council. The site contains a summary of their qualifications and experience, frequently asked questions and a contact form.
“We want to be as transparent as possible,” Dock David said at the time.
However, nothing new has been posted to the website since the first document, a marketability study, was posted Dec. 6.
“We aren’t sure when anything new will go up,” Dock David said. “Because there’s a possibility the City may issue a public request for proposals, we don’t want to give away a business plan we’ve developed over years of due diligence at our own expense.”
If the city does decide to pursue privatizing the airport, a national request for proposals would be called, Ludeman said.
Toledo Express Airport and Toledo Executive Airport are owned by the City of Toledo and have been operated by the Port Authority since 1973.