Charleston airport inquiry over contract work finds no ‘wrongdoing’
An inquiry at Charleston International Airport to determine if certain board members tried to steer construction work to a specific company is over.
“Nothing rose to the level of criminal conduct or ethical breaches,” Charleston County Aviation Authority Chairman Andy Savage said Tuesday. “There was no proof of misdeed or malfeasance. I don’t think there is any proof of any wrongdoing.”
Savage, a prominent Charleston attorney, launched the probe in late March after questions arose in a bid to handle construction and administration work as part of the $189 million makeover of the passenger terminal at Charleston International Airport.
Columbia-based Michael Baker Corp. had submitted a bid of $4.3 million for the inspection work. It included one or possibly more subcontractors that had been recommended by unidentified Aviation Authority members, according to Michael Baker officials.
After the inquiry was launched, Michael Baker withdrew its bid.
The identities of the board members involved were not disclosed.
Savage has pledged more transparency. He also has said he is opposed to board members interacting with contractors or vendors unless it’s in a public forum.
“With the changes in process, we are not going to have the appearance of impropriety,” Savage said Tuesday.
“I think we are going back to where we were before all of this recent unpleasantness,” Airports Director Sue Stevens said.
The airport is about to undergo an extensive renovation and expansion that includes adding six new gates, a third baggage carousel, consolidated security checkpoints, a dome over the lobby, a new rental car pavilion, relocated offices and numerous other changes by August 2015.
Reach Warren L. Wise at 937-5524 or twitter.com/warrenlancewise.