Just the Facts, Ma’am: Taxpayers Want Facts, Not PR Spin, on Briscoe Privatization

Do you believe Brett Smith’s claim that commercial service at Briscoe will create 20,000 jobs?

One of the stakeholders on the Gwinnett Chamber Airport Privatization Task Force Committee, who is now a principal of Fly Gwinnett Forward, sent an email to an external affairs employee of Chairman Bannister, coaching her on what terms to use when publicly discussing commercial service at Briscoe Field, because of what he called “the current economic and political situation.”  He told her when making public comments to use terms like “addition of scheduled service,” “privatization option aimed at adding scheduled passenger service,” and “myriad benefits of privatization and addition of scheduled passenger service.”

Gwinnett taxpayers are smart enough to decide for themselves if they are for or against the airport based upon the facts, not PR terms to cover up the reality of what commercial service could mean for Gwinnett County. Given that this FAA privatization program has a 100 percent failure rate, do taxpayers want to accept , especially in the worst economy in our lifetime?  

The poll commissioned by Propeller included questions like this:

“With the downturn in the local and national economy, many people are concerned that taxes will rise to balance budgets. But privatizing the airport and allowing commercial service at the airport could result in a major positive economic benefit and create thousands of new jobs in Gwinnett. Homeowners and property taxpayers would benefit by bringing in new revenue to the county, possibly preventing future tax increases. Knowing this, would it make you more or less likely to support privatizing the airport, or would it make no difference to you?” 

Knowing how questions were phrased in the poll, do taxpayers feel comfortable with Propeller’s assertion that the poll shows that the vast majority of people in Gwinnett are in favor of their proposal? They forgot to tell poll respondents that, if Propeller fails, the FAA will require taxpayers to pay to operate the commercial airport as long as carriers want to fly out of Briscoe. What impact will that have on your county taxes?

Do you believe Brett Smith’s claim that commercial service at Briscoe will create 20,000 jobs? Do you support ?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Sharon Granger February 29, 2012 at 01:14 AM
I wonder why airport supporters don't want to answer questions about the poll, the job fairs and how many jobs they really expect Propeller to create?


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