FAA Audit Might Deflate Suit

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The Barnstable Patriot says results of an audit of the finances of Barnstable Airport in Massachusetts could let the air out of a lawsuit by a company challenging the local airport commission’s monopoly on fuel sales. Rectrix Commercial Aviation Services, which opened a $6.5 million FBO at Barnstable in 2005, claims revenues from the government-owned fuel service are being illegally diverted to other departments outside the airport in violation of the airport’s grant agreements with the FAA. But the FAA’s review of the finances at the airport says that while some forms were filled out incorrectly, the money is being handled properly. The report, completed Jan. 30, may shatter the foundation of Rectrix’s suit. According to the Barnstable Patriot, the Rectrix suit centered around two forms it claims showed that funds were mishandled, but the FAA auditors disagreed. "We concluded the resulting inaccuracies on the FAA forms did not constitute a misuse of airport revenue, but a misunderstanding by the airport in completing the two forms," the letter reads. "This was easily corrected with the refiling of the forms." Rectrix has not yet comment on the FAA audit findings. The case is headed back in court on Wednesday, when city lawyers are expected to move for a dismissal.