The Historical Aircraft Restoration Society has denied any wrongdoing in allowing parts of its Shellharbour City Council-owned building at Illawarra Regional Airport to be used by other organisations.
This week, Shellharbour City councillors backed an "urgent" recommendation from Cr Peter Moran calling for a report on possible unauthorised use of the building - which does not yet have an occupation certificate - by commercial operators.
HARS spokesman Michael Hough said there was no truth to suggestions the building, leased by HARS as a non-profit organisation, was being sub-leased to commercial operators. Mr Hough said one of the organisations in question, Aerospace Training Services, did not pay rent.
"ATS offers training for year 11 and 12 students ... we give them a rent-free occupancy and they help train the people of the region," Mr Hough said.
"Whether they make money out of this, I don't personally know ... all training and education takes money.
"They have a relationship with local schools and we believe it is a worthwhile thing they do."
ATS declined to comment.
Mr Hough said a second entity in the building was linked to HARS and did not make money.
"That is a workshop we run that restores historic aircraft," he said.
Mr Hough said it was registered essentially for WorkCover and occupational health and safety reasons and was not a commercial enterprise.
"None of these organisations pay rent," he said.
"We also give rent-free accommodation to the rescue helicopter, in short because we want to give back to the community.
"All this is about trying to be a good citizen, it is extremely unfortunate that councillors try and convert this into some form of criticism.
"Councillors should be helping build up the assets of the region rather than chasing cheap publicity."
On Tuesday night, councillors expressed concern over the implications for the council should an incident occur in the building.
In April, council staff said the disjointed construction of the various stages of the HARS building meant a construction certificate had not been issued but work by various consultants, the involvement of Fire and Rescue NSW and a plan of management restricting access to the building meant the level of fire risk the building posed was considered "reasonable".
The council's director of city outcomes, Carey McIntyre, said the council was "acutely aware" of issues surrounding the construction certificate and a plan was being put in place to resolve the matter.