Back in the early aughts, Oklahoma lawmakers gave Rocketplane $15-million in taxpayer money to build a space tourism center at the state spaceport in Burns Flat – a real thing that exists to this very day.
Now over a decade later, Kevin Stitt and other state leaders are seeing more space-infused dollar signs in their eyes.
On Halloween, just one convenient week before election day, Stitt and Co. announced that a company called “Premium Aerospace Center” is going to allegedly invest millions of dollars at the spaceport and bring hundreds and hundreds of jobs to Western Oklahoma.
Here’s his press release about it:
Governor Kevin Stitt and local leaders announced today that Premium Aerospace Center (PAC) will locate its international headquarters at the Oklahoma Air & Space Port complex in Burns Flat, Okla. PAC will invest several million dollars to renovate and expand two existing hangars and build a third hangar at the facility.
“Seeing this project come to fruition has been a goal of mine since we met with Premium Aerospace in Mexico last fall,” Gov. Stitt said. “The investments we are making in this site, and several others, will make Oklahoma a prime target for foreign investment and high-quality jobs. This announcement from PAC further solidifies Oklahoma as the aerospace MRO Capital of the World.”
Yep, Governor Stitt met with “Premium Aerospace Center” – a company with a name that sounds like it was dreamed up by some car warranty text scammers – in Mexico, and they all agreed to invest millions of dollars at the Oklahoma state spaceport.
I have to admit, that’s pretty cool. Just think of all the management and consulting fees and used smokers they'll be able to sneak into those contracts!
PAC signed a long-term lease and business development agreement at the aerospace industrial park and FAA-licensed spaceport at the Clinton-Sherman Airport. The renovated hangars and new hangar will accommodate 737 and larger aircraft for paint and interior remodeling for airline companies with strategies to further expand its business model. The company estimates as many as 600 new jobs to be added once the hangars are complete…
PAC initially plans to hire upward of 30 employees with plans for future investments exceeding $120 million, over the next few years, and a total job creation of between 450 to 600 employees. PAC is working with Western Technology Center and local workforce development leaders to develop a skilled technical workforce to support its operations and growth plans.
Yeah, that’s right. Some company called Premium Aerospace Center is going to invest $120 million and create 600 jobs at the State Spaceport. If you believe all that, I have some valuable land on the moon I’d like to sell you!
Seriously, I know this announcement was nothing more than desperate election season PR, and Stitt’s probably just looking for a new way to help out his grifter pals, but can’t they keep this stuff semi-believable? At least cut the numbers in half, or bring Elon out to view the spaceport like they did when they made a pitch for Tesla's factory.
Anyway, I guess we’ll continue to follow this story and the resulting scandals it will likely create over the next 2 - 10 years.