Contracts for the Galway Airport are expected to be signed before the end of April, city manager Brendan McGrath told councillors at a meeting of Galway City Council on Monday.
Mr McGrath told the chamber that the €1.1 million purchase of the 115 acre site has not yet been finalised but that a closing date has been nominated and efforts are being made to achieve it. He added that there have been delays as it is incumbent on the Galway city and county councils “to protect the public interest and public funds” by working through all the issues thoroughly. Confident that these issues will be worked through, Mr Grath predicted that the contracts will be signed before the end of April.
Fianna Fáil councillor Peter Keane then questioned the future of the aviation licence at the facility which is due to expire on April 1. “I don’t want to see the site bought and then the gate closed. It can be run as an aerodrome or a medivac,” said Cllr Keane, who then called on the council to take all steps necessary to renew the aviation licence, a call which was backed by Independent councillor Catherine Connolly.
In response, Mr McGrath explained that the council was not the owner yet, but added that a meeting with airport stakeholders had taken place recently and efforts are being made to “ensure some form of aviation can continue”.
“All stakeholders are actively engaged in this issue,” said Mr McGrath, before an agreement was made to discuss the issue further at a special meeting of the council planned for Monday March 24.