By Lyra Bordelon
A regional office for the Rainelle Medical Center, located at the Greenbrier Valley Airport, was approved to add new protective measures during the Tuesday, Nov. 17 meeting of the Greenbrier County Airport Authority. The meeting also saw updates on an upcoming event, a new truck, budgets, and more.
The new structure for Rainelle Medical Center is a quarantine measure for those that show up as potential positive COVID-19 cases.
“They’ve been operating out of a tent all summer,” explained Airport Director Brian Belcher. “They’re wanting to put a temporary structure right beside their building so if someone comes up with symptoms of COVID, they can take them in this building with full personal protective equipment will come out and do their checks. That way it keeps somebody who they think has symptoms or potential positive case, is not coming into the actual facility.”
Belcher noted this comes before the airport board due to the medical center’s lease.
“The Rainelle Medical Center is on our property and they own their building but in the lease it says that the airport board has to approve any changes they make to their footprint,” Belcher said.
The authority voted in favor of the new structure.
In other business:
• The authority approved an agreement with the Andrew’s Air Force Base to allow several pilots to visit and fly out of the Greenbrier Valley Airport. Belcher explained “they’re going to bring three F16s down to this airport Dec. 3, which is a Friday. It’s a community engagement event. They want to invite some local pilots and civil air patrol out and speak to them. They’re going to be on the ground for about four hours, going into the air and doing a couple of exercises with the F16s.”
• Deborah Phillips, Airport Authority chairperson, also provided an update for ongoing reviews the airport has open with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), stating that they “have concluded one of the FAA reviews and we now have one pending. The Part 15 complaint is still pending and the authority has not received a decision upon that particular complaint to date. The authority will continue to cooperate with the FAA as requested for the resolution for the matter. … Nothing’s really changed, basically.”
• After the recommendation from Belcher and a motion from Mike Rose, the authority agreed to purchase a one ton pick-up truck with a plow to augment snow-plowing ability this winter. The truck will be purchased through state bidding.
• With approximately $579,000 in CARES Act funding remaining, Martha Livesay, Finance and Human Resource Director, noted the airport has enough to continuously cover it’s operating costs, saying “we have enough, we are still on track” to meet their projections.