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RAY TOWNSHIP, MI-Macomb County has been approached about the purchase of the 265-acre Romeo State Airport–conversations that could mark the beginning of the end of the last commercial landing strip in the county. The airport, in service since the 1930s, was purchased by the state for $5.1 million in 1998.

Peter Lund, vice chairman of the Macomb County board of commissioners, says he has heard rumors the state is looking to transfer ownership of the airport to the county, but he had not been part of any talks. “[Board of commissioners chairwoman] Nancy White and I have never mentioned the word ‘airport’ between us,” Lund says. “I’ve heard the rumors and have talked to Ray Township officials about it. It’s a very touchy subject any time you bring up the word ‘airport’.”

Phil Frame from the office of public affairs for Macomb County says there have been a couple of meetings between the county and state, but no decisions have been made. “The county board of commissioners has not discussed the matter,” Frame says. “But the only reason we would be involved with it would be to keep it an airport. It’s a decent size and could be utilized for good business use.”

No sale price has been discussed in public, although 90 acres of farmland one mile east of the airport recently sold for $2 million. “Everyone has questions and nobody has answers,” Ray Township supervisor Charlie Bohm says. “I’ve attended three meetings in regards to the status of an airport and nothing has come from it. All I know is apparently based on a funding problem. Lansing is refusing to fund the expansion of the airport and recommended it be turned over to the county. But the county says, ‘We’re not going to take over unless we know it’s profitable’.”

St. Clair and Oakland counties each has commercial airports that are in proximity to Macomb County.

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