Patti Smith was among the residents attending a meeting opposed to the airport. BOB ANDRES / BANDRES@AJC.COM

Heavy hitters behind opposition to Paulding airport

Delta Air Lines has no planes and no operations in Paulding County, some 40 miles from its Atlanta hub.

But, in the broad, multi-pronged campaign to block plans for the commercialization of Paulding’s airport, the airline is one of the biggest players.

No longer is the opposition limited to a ragtag handful of local residents. Joining the fight are at least four heavy-hitting law firms. So far, those firms combined have filed three lawsuits; submitted open records requests for piles of documents; taken depositions from airport and county officials; and started a website and a nonprofit 501(c)(4) — a “social welfare” classification that includes issue advocacy groups.

Paulding County officials says the legal opposition is being financed by Delta. They also say Delta is meddling where Delta doesn’t belong — in a local matter.

See more of this story in Thursday’s Atlanta Journal-Constution and on for subscribers.

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