(CN) - In a case of first impression, the 6th Circuit determined that federal law does not allow a Kentucky airport board and a pilot to sue over the exclusive right to airport ramps and parking space.
The court upheld summary judgment for Martin Development Co. and Co-Mar Aviation, which was involved in a lease dispute with the Bowling Green and Warren County Airport Board and pilot Geoff Fields.
The board and Fields challenged the developer's attempt to charge ramp fees for the disputed areas.
The Kentucky Court of Appeals held that the lease agreement plainly and unambiguously granted Martin Development and Co-Mar Aviation exclusive leasehold in the ramp and parking areas.
When the board and Fields were unable to persuade the state high court to review the case, they filed suit in federal court, seeking resolution of whether federal law prevented them from granting defendants exclusive use of the disputed areas.
The Cincinnati-based federal appeals court ruled that a federal law governing ownership rights of airport space bars private parties from filing suit under the statute.
"Plaintiffs offer no evidence of Congress' intent to provide a private right of action," Judge Clay wrote.