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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

County ponders trip to retrieve kit helicopters

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Red Willow County Attorney Paul Wood wants a time, date and location agreed upon and set in stone before county officials go to Colorado to retrieve a kit helicopter built with a loan from the county.

Rex Nelson, administrator of the county's revolving loan program, told Red Willow County commissioners during their meeting Monday morning that Ron Willocks of Longmont, Colo., owner of the now-defunct Pawnee Aviation helicopter kit company, seems anxious and willing to get this matter settled. Nelson said he'll contact Willocks to set up a time to meet to gather up loan collateral -- including files, computers, a finished helicopter and a flat-bed trailer -- that is located in Colorado.

Nelson said there is another trailer, in Oberlin.

In December 2004, Pawnee Aviation borrowed $300,000 to develop and build helicopter kits, and paid back only $4,416.40 in 4 1⁄2 years.

According to a default judgement issued by Red Willow County District Judge David Urbom in November 2009, Willocks owes the original principle of $300,000, plus$45,179.19 in interest and $125.22 in court costs.

The county plans to sell the intellectual property, tools and equipment and a finished helicopter and trailer(s) to recoup what it can of its loan money.

Much of the company's inventory is in Longmont, where Willocks lives. Some of it, however, is still in the former railroad roundhouse in McCook that Pawnee used as a factory.

At the meeting Monday, Nelson presented a list of equipment that remains in the roundhouse, a list that includes hand and power tools, welding equipment, a paint booth, shelving units, steel and wooden tables and instrument panels.

The document also lists "original 'Miss McCook' prototype and parts" and a "single seat helicopter prototype frame and rotor."

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