Thru-the-Fence discussion reaches Orcas Island, Washington

In a lengthy story from the August 2 edition of Islands Sounder, author Nina Laramore lays out the myriad challenges facing Orcas Island (Washington) residents, the Port of Orcas and the FAA.

Once again, the issue is related to thru-the-fence agreements. In the case of Orcas Island, there is a lengthy history surrounding the airport and how there came to be 26 residential lots adjoining the airport property.

Following are two of many intriguing comments from the story:

“They [FAA] just say ‘you need to satisfy us,’ [Commissioner Ulanah] McCoy said. “At first we thought they would be satisfied with charging a fee for airport users that live outside the boundary that have direct access to the runway. But now it appears what they really want is to completely extinguish all access by private property owners with hangers and homes adjoining airport hangers. If we do what they want it’s a taking of property.”

And this:

“It is now a national effort out of FAA headquarters,” [FAA Civil Engineer responsible for the Port of Orcas, Timothy] Shaw said. “They sent guidance to all the field offices saying the opposition policy really wasn’t getting any reaction. It’s not an Orcas issue. It’s a national issue. We are having more and more residential airparks, and homes and airports are just not compatible.”

Be sure to click through and read the complete story at the Islands Sounder and sound off both at its website, and ours in the comment section.