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February 10, 2013

City to keep quiet about L-3 negotiations

GREENVILLE — Representatives from the City of Greenville and L-3 Communications Integrated Systems are about to begin negotiations on a new lease agreement for the defense contractor at Majors Field Municipal Airport.

That doesn’t mean they will be talking publicly about the process.

The Greenville City Council intends Tuesday to vote on approving a non-disclosure agreement with L-3, which would keep details concerning the negotiations confidential.

The vote is scheduled during Tuesday’s regular session, starting at 6 p.m. in the Municipal Building, 2821 Washington Street. A work session is also set for 5 p.m. Tuesday.

Last month, the Council voted to grant a professional services agreement with Taylor Olson Adkins Sralla Elam for legal matters with respect to the airport lease.

The airport covers approximately 1,500 acres. L-3 leases much of the airport property from the City of Greenville, with the original lease agreement reached in 1977. The lease agreement is up for consideration again in 2017.

Tuesday, the Council intends to pass an ordinance “approving a non-disclosure agreement with L-3 Communications governing the negotiation of a new lease for Greenville Municipal Airport -Majors Field with L-3 Communications.” The measure is to be presented by City Attorney Daniel W. Ray.

According to the language in the ordinance, during the lease negotiations the two parties will be exchanging information that is “considered highly sensitive and confidential” and that the information “is classified as confidential by law and subject to mandatory withholding” and “also contains certain commercial and financial information, the disclosure of which is likely to cause substantial competitive harm to L-3 Communications.”

 According to the ordinance, as the City of Greenville is wanting to negotiate with L-3 in good faith, “any City officer, employee or agent granted access to Confidential Information shall be required to agree to abide by said Non-Disclosure Policies, including the requirement that Confidential Information be withheld from any member of the public and any undesignated City officer, employee or agent until such time as this Ordinance is repealed by the City Council of the City of Greenville, except where prohibited by law.”

The Council is also scheduled Tuesday to discuss L-3 with Ray in executive session.

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