City of Tupelo Mayor Jack Reed, Jr. has released the following statement regarding the Tupelo Airport situation, and the resignation of one of the Tupelo Airport Authority’s board members:
“I recognize that there is a lot of interest in the community concerning deliberations of the Tupelo Airport Authority surrounding the employment of the Airport Director, Mr. Terry Anderson.
When the Airport Authority was created under state statutes, it was given the right to hire its own director. The purpose was to take that decision out of the political arena; to allow the Authority to search for, and hire the best possible candidates to run an airport – regardless of that person’s political connections. I think that was a wise decision. I respect that wall of separation. Of course I am vitally interested in the airport’s success.
I have spent hundreds of hours since elected working on the issues of our Essential Air Service and the runway extension project. I will continue to work hard in my role. I will continue to work with the City Council and with the Airport Authority, and with the Airport Director. I will continue to keep the citizens informed as we progress.
My role is to appoint the members of the Tupelo Airport Authority Board. Since Smitty Harris has resigned, I will be making an appointment to replace him, and that appointee will need to be confirmed by our City Council.
I think the citizens prefer a wise decision, rather than a hasty one. I do not feel pressured to offer that appointment immediately. I’m sure we will find an excellent new member.”
– Mayor Jack Reed, Jr.
Tupelo City Press Release