The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia has written to the Winton Shire Council in Queensland, calling for a proposal to privatise Winton Airport to be rejected. The proposal put forward by Outside the Box Group Pty Ltd, is seeking a long-term lease of the Queensland airport, to be used as a base of operations for unmanned aerial vehicle testing and development.
“Winton Airport is an invaluable regional Queensland community gateway for a range of vial services including, the Flying Doctors, emergency services, Angel Flight, commercial, general and recreational aviation users.
“Wherever we have regional and remote airfields privatised, we see a determined decline and contraction in these services, damaging both community and aviation in the process.
“Private companies focus on profits, not on community needs. Under council management the airport is best equipped to ensure that the people of the Winton Shire and regional Queensland come first.
“AOPA Australia is calling on the Winton Shire Council to reject the proposal and has invited council to form a working partnership with the aviation industry, to address any challenges it may have in managing the airport site.
“I am looking forward to continuing our discussions with Winton Shire Council CEO, Mr Ricki Bruhn, in the coming weeks.”, AOPA Australia CEO, Mr Benjamin Morgan.