Channel 27 WKOW TV, Grace Ulch, Feb 2, 2024
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MADISON (WKOW) — Thursday night was the first chance for people who live in Madison to weigh in on the F-35 fighter jets that fly out of Truax Field.
“We want to create that connection, find out how people want the information to be delivered to them, what kind of information they want [and] what’s on their minds,” Future iQ CEO David Beurle, moderator for the listening session, said.
F-35 planes have been flying out of Truax Field since April of 2023. Residents have been impacted by the blaring noise since the fighter jets started taking off. Now, the Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs is working to build a better relationship with Madisonians.
“This is really about a partnership, or a connection, between the F-35 squadron and the military component that goes with that and obviously the community that lives in and around the airport,” Beurle said.
Many people went to Thursday’s listening session ready to lay their concerns on the table.
“It’s been extremely challenging for me, as well as other people who have been in these situations, to hear these planes flying overhead every day,” Madison resident, Julia Bolz, said.
Bolz lives on the shore of Lake Monona and says her house is shaken by the F-35s daily. Bolz spent 10 years as a volunteer in Afghanistan and says she was surprised by how much the planes affect her.
“It’s not just a simple plane flying overhead,” Bolz said. “These are war planes that are meant to drop bombs on people. It is something where my heart starts to palpitate, I duck and cover, the house shakes. This isn’t just affecting me. This all of the children, the schools and it’s a broad radius.”
Thursday was only the first of three listening sessions. If more residents would like to attend, there are two more sessions on Friday and Saturday morning at 9 on Madison College’s Truax campus in room D1630.
If you can’t make it to the listening sessions but would still like to give your feedback, click here.