For nearly 50 years, the Libertarian Party has espoused the virtues of limited government by promoting the idea of individual liberty, personal freedom, and self-governance.

At its core, libertarians oppose any government interference into people’s lives and personal decisions, recognizing that all people should feel free to live their life as they see fit. Inefficiency, disorganization, and irresponsibility on behalf of the government will often have a negative impact on the individual’s way of life and more often than not oppress citizens rather than allow them the freedom to live their lives as they see fit.

For nearly eight years, citizens of both Mahaska County and Marion County have seen just how disorganized and inefficient a government entity can be, as city officials in Pella and Oskaloosa, and Mahaska County leaders have attempted to get the proposed South Central Regional Airport off the ground.

The Mahaska County Board of Supervisors have at least attempted to work for the will of the people by trying to terminate an agreement for the airport’s construction. Meanwhile, both Pella and Oskaloosa City Councils have slowly moved forward with plans to build the airport, deferring to an unelected board to make vital decisions on the use of taxpayer-funded resources and the recommendation of utilizing eminent domain to obtain land that is needed to build their airport.

Most recently, the city of Pella announced the purchase of land for the airport in the amount of over $1.7 million; just over a million coming from a grant from the FAA while the remaining $58,000+ being paid by the city of Pella.

While the Republican and Democratic parties have remained mostly quiet on the subject, the Libertarian Party of Mahaska County and the newly formed Libertarian Party of Marion County stand united in firm opposition of the proposed airport. Our founding fathers recognized that the primary function of our government was to protect the rights of its citizens, with property rights being a cornerstone of liberty.

County Libertarian leadership stand up for the rights and liberty of residents in both Mahaska and Marion Counties by opposing the government overreach being imposed through unnecessary use of federal, county, and city tax dollars, the proposal to steal land from residents through the unconstitutional use of eminent domain, and the decision to allow an unelected board influence decisions that should be made solely by representatives of the people, such as the Board of Supervisors.

As we always have, the Libertarian Party will continue to work diligently in supporting and fighting for the liberties of all Marion and Mahaska county citizens by holding city and county leadership accountable for the decisions they make which impact residents. We are also committed to keeping the public informed throughout the development of the proposed airport.

We encourage you to join us in opposing the airport by holding our officials accountable and speaking out against the destruction of our rights as citizens.

Mike Conner Jr. is the Marion County Libertarian Party Chair and Brandon Molyneux is the Mahaska County Libertarian Party Chair.

Recommended for you