Although most people think of the bridge the falls in the video, I have been following the sale of this municipally owned airport for a couple years. At one time there was a rumored private investor who wanted to buy the airport, but in the end it was to be sold to the county government, Pierce County.
The thing we should all be focusing on is, what price did the City of Tacoma sell the airport to Pierce County? Although the market value, according to Mike Slevin (the city’s interim public works director), was estimated to be anywhere between $10 million and $20 million in recent years as reported in an article written by Niki Sullivan in the News Tribune. The sale price was determined to be $5 million.
In the end the sale price has been dropped to $3 million, why? Turns out, according to the article, federal law dictates that the sale price is determined by expenses incurred over the previous six years. After an audit the the City of Tacoma could only come up with $3 million, thus the sales price.
This begs the question, what have been the expenses incurred the previous six years by the City of Worcester at ORH? The debt expense has been about $600,000 per year so that is about $3,600,000 over 6 years. On the other hand, there has been subsidies on the operating expenses at varying levels by MassPort. My best guesstimate is that the City of Worcester's share is probably around $3,000,000.
Does that mean the most that we could sell the airport for is $6,600,000?
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