Tempers riled over future of Charlotte airport - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Tempers riled over future of Charlotte airport

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

It was filled with fireworks from the very beginning when the head of Charlotte's Airport Advisory Committee was called to the Government Center to explain his role in a possible takeover of Charlotte Douglas International by a state sanctioned airport authority.

Shawn Dorsch was intensely grilled by Mayor Anthony Foxx and City Council.

With his voice raised and a laser like focus, the Mayor asked Dorch over and over, "Have you known about it since January of 2012 ?"

For several moments there was not a fluent response, and in a very firm tone the mayor again probed Dorch.

"Sir I am asking you a question ? "

"Have you known about it since January of 2012 ?"

His reply, "I don't recall an exact date. I have heard people talk about the idea of an airport authority for a long time."

It did not stop with the mayor several council members continued with a buzz saw of questions.

Andy Dulin even resorted to name calling.

"You are one slick fellow, and I don't trust you," Dulin said.

The issue behind tension is did Dorsch cross the line when he talked to elected officials in neighboring counties about the idea of forming an airport authority ?

He said, "Any conversations that I've had with anyone has been in a personal capacity."

Council member Beth Pickering asked if he ever considered resigning.

" I have not done anything that would require that or warrant that," Dorsch said.

The state senate approved a bill that would take Charlotte Douglas International away from the city, and house members in the general assembly could vote on it next week.

Meanwhile, a city backed study regarding the airport is expected to be completed by May 1.

Copyright 2013 WBTV. All rights reserved.

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