It is probably not necessary to detail Todd Eachus's role in trying to secure $250 million dollars of taxpayer money(which he wanted the citizens of Pennsylvania to borrow on behalf of Robert Powell and Mike Marsicano), however another actor in the "Fantasy Cargo Airport" was not Ricardo Montalbon but none other than Paul Kanjorski.
Here is a press release from his website from January 31, 2007.
"I have been a supporter of the concept of locating a cargo airport in Northeastern Pennsylvania because of the tremendous economic development benefits it could have for our region, as outlined in the feasibility study released in February 2005, for which I worked to obtain federal funding in association with my colleague Congressman Tim Holden. As former Mayor of Hazleton and a pilot for Continental Airlines, Mike Marsicano convinced me that our region could be an ideal location for a multi-purpose airport that could handle not only air cargo, but also emergency landing capacity and aircraft maintenance facilities.
"Private sector investment in a project such as this can potentially get it done more quickly, rather than waiting for the approval process of obtaining federal grants. I am supportive of any thoughtful initiative that strengthens our local economy and brings good jobs to our area. I look forward to learning more of the details of this project so that I can be of assistance."
But it doesn't stop there. Kanjorski's role to help now convicted felon Robert Powell can be traced back to 2000 as Kanjo continued to push for a feasibility study in spite of the fact that no municipality was supporting the project. He wasted $300,000.00 of taxpayers money to help Robert Powell, who just yesterday admitted to handing cash to convicted Judges Conahan and Ciavarella in Fed-Ex boxes.
The $270,000 for the study was included in legislation that funds the Federal Aviation Administration for the next three years, U.S. Reps. Paul Kanjorski and Timothy Holden report.
After Kanjorski and Holden got on board, Luzerne County commissioners agreed
to pay the local share, about $30,000, for the study.
Commissioners from Carbon and Schuylkill counties said they must be
contacted about the next steps.
"I have yet to hear anything from those people," Carbon Commissioner Tom
Schuylkill Commissioner Forrest Shadle said he has not been contacted about
forming an authority.
Gladstone partners remind us of the fact that Paul Kanjorski kept pushing for the airport for at least ten years in this press release.
Almost 10 years ago, then-mayor of Hazleton Michael Marsicano pitched an ambitious project -- a cargo airport where Carbon, Luzerne and Schuylkill counties meet.
But for much of the last decade, the proposal seemed more off than on. U.S. Rep. Paul Kanjorski reminded area folks about the potential airport from time to time. A study found that such a facility would be feasible, but many were turned off by the billion-dollar price tag and few seemed to be willing to take it to the next step.
Then last week, seemingly out of the blue, there it was: The airport idea -- a project that if realized could transform the Hazleton area even moreso than King Coal itself -- went from a pipe dream to a near certainty.
There was certainly much work done behind the scenes, because before invitations went out for Wednesday's big announcement, the airport wasn't even on the radar screen.
The mayor of Hazleton, the closest city to the airport location, wasn't consulted or even informed. State Rep. Todd Eachus was a main speaker at Wednesday's announcement; maybe he and Louis Barletta haven't completely buried the hatchet.
Eachus and Kanjorski have been ganging up on screwing Hazleton for a long time over Lou Barletta. Shame on them for violating the public trust put in them when they were elected. Like him or not, Lou Barletta is the Mayor of Hazleton. If you don't like him at least have the decency to honor the office.
“It is inaccurate to say that I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office.”- Henry Louis Mencken quotes (American humorous Journalist and Critic of American life who influenced US fiction through the 1920s, 1880-1956)
Heck they didn't have the decency to contact officials of the municipalities where this airport would be located or affect.
Hazle Township Supervisor Chairman Bill Gallagher said he found out in Tuesday's Standard-Speaker that the airport idea might fly.
Maybe most importantly, some Schuylkill County officials were in the dark. That's alarming, considering that about half of the airport's 13,000-foot runway, as conceived now, would be in Schuylkill County.
"We haven't heard anything for at least four years," said Gerald L. Heffner, vice president of the Schuylkill Economic Development Corporation, adding that he was not aware of Wednesday's announcement beforehand.
Kanjo, here's a question. Why did you keep pushing for an airport that without contacting the public officials who should be kept informed of your efforts? Was now convicted felon Robert Powell more important to you than the citizens you represent?