#Stratford CT– Mayor Laura R. Hoydick and State Senator Kevin Kelly are calling on Governor Ned Lamont and the City of Bridgeport to prevent a state takeover of the Sikorsky Memorial Airport, and requesting that any change in management or ownership be undertaken through a transparent competitive bidding process. The call comes as the Connecticut Airport Authority (CAA) is attempting to proceed with a no-bid acquisition of the Airport from the City of Bridgeport which has owned it since 1937. The entire airport is within the territorial boundaries of the Town of Stratford.
“If the City of Bridgeport is interested in selling the airport, then it is the time for the Town of Stratford to take ownership of the SikorskyMemorial Airport. We will ensure capable management commensurate with the concerns of the region and surrounding community, and the sensitive environmental assets located there,” said Mayor Hoydick. “The future of Stratford and the future of the airport are intertwined, and Stratford would like the fair and proper opportunity to direct this shared destiny.”
“Sikorsky airport, located in Stratford, is very much a piece of our community and history,” said Sen. Kelly. “Stratford must have a fair opportunity to acquire the airport in a transparent and open process. The airport must not fall subject to a no bid state takeover. Local control is vital to ensure proper management of the airport with respect for the local community and environmental protection concerns. We must honor the 1978 and 2012 agreements. We are seeing a disturbing overreach of power by the state, with little to no transparency or respect for the local community.”
In a letter last week to Governor Ned Lamont, Mayor Joseph Ganim of Bridgeport, and members of the Sikorsky Airport Commission expressing interest on behalf of Stratford in acquiring the airport and asking for a delay in the state takeover process, Mayor Hoydick cited a recent draft study by the Connecticut Center for Economic Analysis at the UConn School of Business. The report notes many improvements and enhancements the Town would like to pursue, while providing no indication that the airport would be better served by the CAA rather than Stratford and its partners.
“The CAA was created by the legislature in 2011 to develop, improve, and operate Bradley International Airport and the state’s five general aviation airports,” added Hoydick. “The legislature did not authorize the CAA to own or operate a general aviation airport of ‘National Importance’ such as Sikorsky Memorial Airport. The legislature no doubt recognized that such general aviation airports were best managed without State intervention. What was true in 2011 remains true today.”