Little Rock Airport: More spending of your dollars | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Little Rock Airport: More spending of your dollars

Posted By on Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 6:17 PM

MANANA: Maybe tomorrow TJ Williams of Little Rock Airport will have info on new job.
  • MANANA: Maybe tomorrow TJ Williams of Little Rock Airport will have info on new job.
So, I got a tip that the Little Rock National Airport is seeking to hire someone in the communications/information realm. Surely not, I said. T.J. Williams, who makes almost $100,000 a year to answer questions from jerks like me, got a raise this year (when everybody else in the world is sucking wind) and a bonus the year before that. Of course, she took the fall for airport director Ron Mathieu's attempt to funnel $40,000 in public dollars to his kid's private school football project, so you'd hardly think she's in any danger of being replaced. That was her advertising idea for the airport website, she insisted, through which Mathieu washed his contribution of public dollars to a Christian academy.

The LIT website shows no job opening. So I asked TJ if they were hiring in the communications field. Newspapers kind of suck these days, maybe they need a wordsmith like me on their staff?

Response:

There is a search to begin for a Director of Public Affairs.

What is that exactly? Is that marketing/pr/communications? Or is it lobbyist? Is there an ad out I can see? Pay? I presume this doesn't affect your shop ?

Haven't seen the posting, so I don't have that info.


Well I guess I need to request relative info under FOI including internal emails related to the job. Jeez, TJ, does it always have to be this hard?

I'm sorry I don't have the answers you are looking for. I have not seen a posting for the position as I said. I do not know when the position will be posted. Again, I apologize.

Also, I have not sent or received internal emails related to the job.

Enough. $100,000 a year isn't enough to get a full answer out of Little Rock National's communications department. But, OK, it is after hours. Maybe tomorrow will produce more information. Sounds like a lobbyist job. The airport is awash in money, thanks to rapacious increases in passenger boarding fees, parking fees and rental car fees. It can afford it. It also got hammered in the last legislature by a private parking lot it tried to steamroll with confiscatory privilege fee increases, despite the city's enormous lobby effort. That lobby expense (they brought in extra help) was another crazy city expenditure worth contemplating with a sales tax increase on the table. Never mind the Chamber of Commerce subsidy. But, I should add, if wining and dining Chamber bigwigs in Paris on public airport dollars can't win you some clout at the legislature, let the CofC goober buy his own damn wine.

Jeez, LIT, could I ever get a quick, straight answer about anything at that multi-million-dollar rich boys' (and one powerful woman's) club?

UPDATE: See later link for more details.

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