Florence airport repaying feds for years of high rent

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF/AP) If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. And the Florence Airport is feeling the sting after enjoying so many years of a deal that was just too sweet.
The contract drawn up by the federal government leased a 1,000-square-foot office to the TSA for more than $18,000 a month.
Former Airport Authority Board member Fred Jolley says it seemed unusual but the authority thought it was getting a good deal. The federal government renewed the contract twice.
The government sued the authority, saying it grossly overpaid for rent.
The Florence Regional Airport has already paid $100,000 to the federal government on June 5, and will pay an additional $100,000 on or before September 5.
The airport has signed a promissory note promising to pay the federal government the sum of $705,249.50 together with 2.5% interest with 300 consecutive monthly payments of $3,163.87 beginning on September 1.
The airport is paying back the federal government a total of $1,149,161.
The new lease for the same space has been signed with the TSA for 10 years at $1,443.75 per month.

Copyright 2012 WMBF News. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.