Bill to take airport from Charlotte clears Senate

Posted March 13, 2013

Senators cast a nearly party-line vote Wednesday to take Charlotte-Douglas International Airport away from the city and put it in the hands of a regional authority. 

Republicans generally backed the measure, with the exception of Sen. Fletcher Hartsell, R-Cabarrus, who backed the bill on a first vote Tuesday but voted against it Wednesday. All Senate Democrats voted against the measure.

As was the case on Tuesday, debate was intense, with lawmakers showing the strain of both partisan and regional rivalries.

"This is not a deliberative body any more," said Sen. Malcolm Graham, D-Mecklenburg, chastising his colleagues for rushing through a bill that deals with an asset the city of Charlotte built up over decades. "Nobody has any factual information on what will happen if this bill becomes law."

Sen. Tom Apodaca, R-Henderson, took umbrage at being "accused of every crime a legislative body can commit," saying the Democrats were hardly deliberative when they controlled the chamber four years ago.

"Nobody's being slayed and thrown out onto the streets," he added. 

The measure now goes to the House.

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  • dfmlythr Mar 15, 2013