June 3, 2008



PRESENT:      Siemer, Bergstein, Pollack


EXCUSED:    Janson, Woodruff 


OTHERS:       J.T. Rairigh, Tom Ryden, John Palen, Jim Reike


REPORTED BY:  Bradd Maki                                            


Commissioner Pollack called the meeting to order at 4:59 p.m. 


The minutes of the regular March 25, 2008 meeting were received and reviewed.  It was moved by Siemer and supported by Bergstein “to approve and file the minutes of the March 25, 2008 meeting.”   Approved (4/0).   


The Monthly Manager’s Report Summary for February through April 2008 was presented and reviewed by J.T. Rairigh.  Comparisons were made with the same time period the previous year.  There were 62 good flying days and 28 poor flying days for this period.  Rairigh reported general aviation fuel sales (100LL) were down for this period from last year, but Jet fuel sales were almost double from last year due to a greater number of new and regular business flights.  The courtesy car is popular and fuel prices are competitive for the area.  Bergstein asked what the cost for fuel is currently.  Rairigh indicated 100LL is currently $4.78 and Jet A is $4.88.  Pollack asked whether there were any issues received with jet noise.  Rairigh indicated there were none he was aware of and jet pilots are generally conscious in this regard.  Also smaller jets that would land at the airport provide less noise than larger jets. 


The Airport Maintenance Status Report was provided by J.T. Rairigh.  Mowing operations have begun.  Some equipment maintenance has occurred, but not out of the ordinary. 




1.      Promotion Committee Report – Janson was not present to provide this report.

2.      Project Updates – This report was moved to New Business following the Fact-Finding Committee Report.  




1.      Fact-Finding Committee Report – Siemer and Ryden presented a sub-committee report based on responses from a questionnaire provided to area airports and four meetings held by the sub-committee since the March 25, 2008 Aviation Advisory Commission meeting.  Ryden described the purpose of the sub-committee which includes identifying and recommending a cost efficient fact based model for maintenance which fosters long term airport growth.  The meetings used questionnaire results, an interview with Bay City personnel, and review of 8 similar sized airports.  Meeting observations included difficulty in sustaining on-field maintenance and establishing requirements for success at the airport.  Requirements for success included combining the FBO and OPS manager, fuel flowage fee and hangar control, and installation of a municipal supported maintenance facility.  Also, free-lance maintenance would need to be controlled.  Pollack asked whether hangar costs were evaluated.  Ryden indicated hangar costs were not evaluated in this process as they were reviewed several years ago.  Siemer reported the following options for implementation of an FBO:

a.       Do nothing, which allows current FBO services on a part time basis.  This is reported as the cheapest option but will not promote long-term viability.

b.      Provide incentive for separate FBO maintenance.  This was reported as the most expensive and least practical solution.

c.       Combine FBO and Airport Operations.  This was reported as most efficient, best long term option, and would foster airport growth.  However, capital investment would be needed for a maintenance facility.


Bergstein asked whether there was any discussion about an FBO performing work at more than one airport.  Rairigh indicated there were a couple areas that do this but have not been reviewed in detail.  Pollack asked where the nearest airport is that provides FBO services.  Siemer indicated Mt. Pleasant.  Pollack asked what the next course of action would be.  Siemer indicated the next available time for contract review should include combining the FBO and OPS.  Siemer also indicated that his observations of air traffic seem to be greater for the Midland area than for other areas.  Pollack asked whether the FAA covers costs for a maintenance facility.  McManus indicated that the FAA does not contribute funds for this purpose.  McManus suggested looking at other airport business models as the next step in the process to make sure the findings as stated in the report would yield a good model for the City.  Pollack added that if we are to have an FBO, the first order of business would be establishing a building for this operation.  McManus added that airports our size are losing FBO’s due to rising costs for these operations and providing hangars may not be enough to attract the business. 

2.      Project Updates (moved from OLD BUSINESS) - Maki provided an update of the AWOS system installation and the Fuel Tank project.  The AWOS system installation is on schedule for construction in August 2008.  The City met with MDOT to discuss maintenance costs.  Maki indicated MDOT will provide a 50/50 split for AWOS maintenance instead of providing no assistance.  For the 15,000 gallon underground fuel tank project, costs were greater than anticipated for various reasons requiring future fund entitlements to complete the installation.  An option was discussed for installation of an above ground facility.  Revised estimates have not been provided, however the consultant indicated projects costs may be reduced to levels near the existing fund entitlements.  The commission would need to decide whether to keep or remove the project from the 5-year capital plan schedule. 

3.      Capital Planning – Maki provided a copy of the existing 5-year capital plan for the airport, which is similar to the plans provided in the January and March meetings earlier this year.  Commissioner Bergstein had left the meeting prior to discussion of the 5-year plan so a quorum was no longer in place to vote on the plan.  McManus reviewed the current 5-year plan and indicated the 2012 plan for a new T-Hangar would need to show a revised cost based on research on current cost for this type of installation.  Also, the 2012 plan would likely involve multiple year entitlements and will be revised to show a two or three year funding plan.  Some discussion regarding a hangar waiting list ensued.  It was determined the new hangar, once built should have little problems being filled.  McManus indicated that he would call for a special meeting, communicate this issue by email, and/or execute a straw poll to determine whether the commission approves the current plan for submittal to the State.  The City will need to submit a revised plan to the State by July, 2008.    


McManus provided some general comments prior to public comment.  The ford Tri-Motor will be here August 18th-20th.  Michigan Airborne Days will be here on July 19th and 20th.  A pancake breakfast is scheduled for August 28th.





Meeting was adjourned at 5:59 p.m.