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Published: Friday, 12/5/2008

Interim head wants Port Authority job

Toth Toth

Paul Toth, the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority's interim president, plans to apply for that job on a permanent basis, but has yet to submit his resume.

A local executive-search firm is still identifying other potential successors to port authority President James Hartung, so "the search is not to that point yet" where the agency is considering applicants, Mr. Toth said during taping Tuesday of the Deadline Now television program.

Mr. Toth, whom the port authority's board of directors appointed interim president when it voted Aug. 1 to fire Mr. Hartung, said he is interested. But he said that because he also enjoyed his work as the agency's vice president of technical and financing services, he would not be unhappy if the board hired someone else.

During the half-hour program, Mr. Toth and Eric Frankl, the port authority's director of airports, provided an overview of the agency, which owns Toledo's train station and several dock terminals at the Port of Toledo, manages Toledo's two airports under a long-term lease from the city of Toledo, oversees several economic-development financing programs, and recently has acquired and decontaminated several "brownfield" industrial sites.

Primary among the latter is the former Gulf Oil refinery site in East Toledo, which the port authority bought in May from Chevron Corp. and hopes to redevelop as a new marine terminal, warehousing complex, and possible ship-to-train transfer center.

Toledo Express Airport, meanwhile, has been hit hard in recent years by airline service cuts, initially because of the rising price of fuel and then because of declining air travel in the recession. Mr. Frankl noted during the interview, however, that besides passenger service, Express is used extensively by military, cargo, and private flights, with the Ohio Air National Guard's 180th Fighter Wing accounting for most military traffic and the BAX-Schenker cargo hub, one of three in the United States, accounting for most cargo.

Deadline Now will air at 8:30 tonight and at 2:30 a.m. tomorrow on WGTE-TV, Channel 30.

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