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St. Louis to look into privatizing airport

St. Louis-Lambert International Airport

ST. LOUIS – St. Louis officials have approved hiring consultants to determine whether to lease the city’s airport out to a private operator.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the city’s Board of Estimate and Apportionment voted 2-1 Wednesday to look into privatizing the St. Louis Lambert International Airport.

Supporters see privatization as a chance for St. Louis to make money, but critics question transparency and conflicts of interest.

Comptroller Darlene Green gave the lone opposing vote. Green says a private entity would put bottom-line profit over public service. She says voters should approve any final decision to lease the airport.

Mayor Lyda Krewson says it’s unclear whether there would be a final vote at the end of the exploration process, which could take up to three years.