An Open Letter to the Pima County Board of Supervisors


This article was originally sent as an email to members of the Tucson City Council—Ed

The wording of the Pima County Board of Supervisors Resolution in support of Davis Monthan AFB goes way too far. It is not in the interests of the vast majority of citizens living in Pima County for the County to support “any new mission, flying or otherwise, that could be supported by Davis-Monthan or other bases in our region.

To state this, is to support bringing in even riskier and louder aircraft to fly over the most densely populated portion of the County, which is also the most densely populated portion of the City of Tucson. Citizens living in this area have already had their safety, health, and quality of life compromised.

Residences, schools, churches, businesses, clinics, and even the U of A and Reid Park already endure far too many single-engine, single-pilot, loud aircraft flying over, multiple times a day. For their elected officials to now give an official “go ahead” to the Air Force to bring in whatever they wish, whenever they wish, to fly over whomever they wish, is beyond the pale.

What this resolution should support, is saving the A-10, which is the quietest, and safest Air Force fighter. It has an excellent safety record. Like most residents of Tucson, I have no opposition to its continued missions over Tucson and to expanding Davis-Monthan’s role in maintaining and flying the A-10.

However, it is a known fact that the Air Force plans to replace all its fighters with the F-35. It is also a known fact that the F-35, despite many years of development and attempts to resolve its many serious problems, is still not a safe aircraft by any measure.

Therefore, in announcing their approval of the Air Force bringing in any aircraft the Air Force desires, to fly over the citizens Pima County, the Board of Supervisors is supporting bringing in the F-35.

This is a clear dereliction of the primary duty of County Board of Supervisors, which is to protect and serve the citizens of Pima County. Passage of this resolution without bringing it to the ballot for a vote by the citizens who will be affected, is a serious breach of the trust of Pima County citizens. This is an issue of serious consequence.

Thank your for your consideration in this important matter.

Lee Stanfield

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