TAMWORTH Regional Council (TRC) held an extraordinary meeting this week as BAE Systems begins winding up its operation at the airport.
Councillors met on Wednesday to endorse an initial agreement between TRC and BAE Systems for the flight school to surrender its current lease at the airport and transfer assets back to council.
The Heads of Agreement supported by the councillors in a closed meeting will form the basis of a formal commercial contract which will have to be signed-off on by council once again before it’s bye bye BAE.
Mayor Col Murray expected it to be all wrapped-up “around the end of 2019 with some minor carryover” into the following year.
Cr Murray made a point to express how good BAE had been for the city as a “corporate citizen”.
Tamworth recently missed out on Qantas’ vaunted pilot academy, with Toowoomba announced as the first of two cities to secure the commercial training facility.
Tamworth is still in the mix to be named as the second site, however Cr Murray said at the time of the first announcement BAE’s continuing presence at the airport could have played into Qantas’ decision.
Qantas wanted to open the doors on its first training facility by mid-2019.
The Academy is expected to eventually grow to train as many as 500 pilots a year across two sites, including for other airlines and general aviation.
A decision on the second site will be made before the end of the year.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.