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Pulaski County Council Discusses Airport Manager Position

 There are still some unanswered questions for the Pulaski County Council members concerning the airport manager’s position.

Questions mentioned were the need for a full time manager or employee at the airport and what amount of fuel is needed to fill the tank on the premises for airplanes.

The council and commissioners held a joint session on June 30 to hammer out the details, but when the council members met last night to approve the airport manager’s salary and benefits as an additional appropriation they questioned the need for the position, reimbursement of fuel funds and the hourly wage.

Bud Wagner had been working at the airport for several years but was not on the county’s payroll and in the joint meeting County Attorney Kevin Tankersley recommended Wagner be a county employee and receive benefits just like other employees doing county work.

Wagner was also paying for fuel out of his own pocket and when the pilots refueled planes he got his money back. He had equipment at the airport that he purchased and was using at the airport. Tankersley told the government entities that it would in the best interest of the county to buy those items from Wagner so the county would own the property instead of Wagner.

The commissioners approved all of the items discussed previously but the council members hesitated to approve an additional appropriation for the $11,002 requested for the salary and reimbursement of fuel.

The five of the seven council members present, Roger Querry, Jay Sullian, Ron Powers, Tom Roth and Doug Roth, asked Auditor Shelia Garling to schedule a special session with the commissioners and members of the airport board for Monday, July 21 at 5:30 p.m. ET to iron out final details of the salary-wage ordinance. The members did eventually approve the transfer of the money for the salary and reimbursement for fuel, but added that the ordinance can be amended if necessary.