Dispute at Colorado Airport Hits the Courts

 - March 8, 2014, 1:10 AM

The operators of the Black Canyon Jet Center FBO at Colorado’s Montrose Regional Airport have filed suit against the publicly owned airport, claiming officials withheld documents it requested during a recent RFP for a second FBO at the ski-country airport. The suit came days after the airport committee announced that Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Majestic Skies was the only one of the two respondents to meet the minimum FBO requirements. As per the FAA’s grant assurance policy, the county must enter into good-faith contract negotiations with the company.

Black Canyon’s operators allege that the county authorities violated Colorado law by negotiating with businesses to establish another FBO at the airport before the RFP was issued. The county stated that it received an unsolicited letter of intent last June from a company looking to establish a rival FBO at the airport. That letter spurred the issuance of the RFP, which attracted the attention of providers such as Landmark Aviation, Atlantic Aviation, Million Air, Sheltair and Cutter Aviation, among others, but only two proposals.

The lawsuit seeks to determine why documents such as the initial letter of intent and other information about who received the RFP, the submitted proposals and communications between the proposing companies and the county itself have not been made available.