Airport found legitimate in troop treatment
January 31, 2008
By Audrey Hudson
The Oakland International Airport did not break any laws or regulations when it denied 200 Marines and soldiers access to the passenger terminal during a layover last year from Iraq to the troops' home base in Hawaii, the Transportation Department says. Calvin L. Scovell III, the department's inspector general, blamed the mix-up on security concerns and a communication failure between the Defense Department and the Homeland Security Department. The contract to allow military layovers at the California airport "did not require that military personnel have access to the airport terminal; it only required that military personnel be allowed to deplane and stretch their legs on stops lasting over one hour," said a report released yesterday to House lawmakers who requested an investigation into the matter. The Sept. 27 layover was the last stop for fuel and food, but the troops, who were returning from a tour in Iraq, were denied access to food and bathroom facilities.
(cut for space - read whole article here)
Mr. Mica said he and Rep. Tom Petri, Wisconsin Republican and ranking member of the Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee on aviation, will follow up on the inspector general's report. "The shocking thing is that there is no protocol for handling our returning troops, and at Oakland they got a very rude welcome," Mr. Mica said. "We just need to get some regular order of the process so we don't have a recurrence of what we saw happen here."
Read the whole article here.
I hope the Congressmen, Mica and Petri keep on this.