May 15, 2008




The meeting was held in the Airport Commission Board Room, 8600 Garfield Road, Freeland, Michigan 48623.  Chairman Kenneth Distler called the meeting to order at 1:00 p.m.  Roll was called by Debbie Meisel.




Present                           Absent & Excused      Staff                      Other     

George J. Biltz               Brian K. Elder             Jeff Nagel             Cheryl Wade, Midland Daily News

Kenneth W. Distler                                            A. T. Lippert         John Palen, Midland Issues

Darnell Earley (1:07)                                          Ryan Riesinger      Angela Osmond - TSA

Eugene F. Gwizdala                                             Debbie Meisel   

Ernie Krygier                                                                                  

Jon Lynch (1:06)                                                Guests

Hollis H. McKeag                                              Pat Frame – RS&H 

Joyce J. Seals                                                     Aaron Aljets – RS&H                                             




MINUTES:  Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to approve the minutes of the Regular Commission Meeting held on April 17, 2008.  Mr. Krygier seconded the motion.  The motion was unanimously approved by the Board.


APRIL 2008 WARRANT AND CASH & INVESTMENT SUMMARY:  Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to approve the Warrant Registers for the April Payroll Account Check Numbers 83803-83859; the April Operations and Maintenance Check Numbers 38397-38461; and the April Cash and Investment Summary.  Ms. Seals seconded the motion and the Board unanimously approved it.




ELECTION OF OFFICERS:  Chairman Distler stated that the following officers were elected in May of 2007, which was the first full term for all three officers; Ken Distler – Chairman, Hollis McKeag – Vice-Chairman, and Gene Gwizdala – Secretary.  The By-Laws state that “no commissioner shall serve for more than two (2) consecutive one (1) year terms,” so each of these officers may be elected for a second term.  Also, according to the By-Laws, each governmental entity must be represented by holding an officer position.  The Airport Manager is designated as the Assistant Secretary and Treasurer.  Mr. Krygier made a motion to reappoint the officers with Mr. Biltz seconding.  The motion unanimously carried.


MEETING SCHEDULE:  Chairman Distler stated that during the annual meeting in May, the Commission approves the schedule for regular Commission meetings for the next year.  The following schedule sets the date on the third Thursday of each month:


             June 19, 2008                                                        December 18, 2008

             July 17, 2008                                                         January 15, 2009

             August 21, 2008                                                    February 19, 2009

             September 18, 2008                                               March 19, 2009

             October 16, 2008                                                   April 16, 2009

             November 20, 2008                                               May 21, 2009


The MBS International Airport Commission meets at 1:00 p.m. in the Commission Board Room, second floor of the Passenger Terminal, 8600 Garfield Road, Freeland, Michigan.


Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to approve the schedule of regular meeting dates.  Ms. Seals seconded and the motion unanimously carried.


MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM CONFERENCE:  Chairman Distler stated that the Municipal Employees Retirement (MERS) conference will be held at the Grand Traverse Resort in Traverse City on September 30 – October 2, 2008.  The law requires that an employee delegate and alternate shall be selected by secret ballot of the employees who are in the retirement system.


The Board must also appoint a delegate, and in the past, the Airport Manager was chosen.  A motion is required naming the delegate, alternate and the Board selection delegate.  A ballot was taken and Debra Meisel and Carol Janks were selected as employee delegate and alternate respectively.  Mr. Krygier made a motion acknowledging Debra Meisel as employee delegate, Carol Janks as employee alternate and Jeff Nagel as officer delegate with Mr. Biltz seconding.  The motion unanimously carried. 


PACKET PRESENTATION:  The Commission discussed the presentation of the packet exhibits by the Airport Manager.  Mr. Biltz made a motion that the exhibits and the manager’s recommendation be incorporated into the minutes without formal reading.  Mr. Krygier seconded and the motion passed unanimously.


CONSUMERS POWER EASEMENT:  Consumers Power requires an easement to run utilities to the new Dow Corning hangar.  Since MBS owns the property, the airport is the granting authority.


Mr. Nagel has reviewed the proposed easement from Consumers and Mr. Lippert has reviewed and approved it as to form.  The location was also reviewed and approved by Dow Corning representatives.  A copy was included in the packet. 


Mr. Biltz made a motion to approve the easement for the purpose of installing gas and electric service to the new Dow Corning hangar and authorize the Chairman to sign the related paperwork.  Ms. Seals seconded and the Board passed the motion unanimously.


NEW FARM LEASE:  Since the airport took possession of the property to the north, farming has not been allowed on that land.  Now that it is known how the utility work will access the new terminal site, the remainder of the property can be leased for farming.  The FAA strongly encourages this to help keep the property from reverting to wetlands.


The attached drawing depicts the approximate area that could be farmed totaling about 95 acres.  Two of the current farmers have inquired about leasing this property.  They would need to get access to the property prior to the end of June.


Mr. Nagel would like to solicit bids from all of the MBS current farmers and award a one-year lease, with two one-year options to continue farming on any land that is available in this area.  The lease will be awarded on best bid received and will include comparable terms and conditions as the existing agriculture leases.


Mr. Krygier made a motion to approve the Airport Manager to receive bids to farm approximately 95 acres north of the airport and authorize the Airport Manager to sign a one-year lease with two one-year options.  Ms. Seals seconded.  Mr. Biltz verified that the acreage will be adjusted each year based on availability.  There being no further discussion, the motion passed unanimously.


HANGAR #4 ASSIGNMENT:  Hangar #4 is the only hangar on the airport which is owned by the Commission.  The Commission has leased the hangar to Dow Corning since 1985.


With the ongoing construction of the new Dow Corning hangar, they would like to assign the Hangar #4 lease to Dow Chemical.  The lease gives them the authority to do so with Airport Commission consent, which cannot be unreasonably withheld.


Although the actual assignment date is to be determined, both parties desired to get Airport Commission approval early in the process.  Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to consent to the assignment of the Hangar #4 lease from Dow Corning to Dow Chemical and authorize the Chairman to sign the related paperwork.  Ms. Seals seconded.  Mr. Biltz abstained from the vote.  The motion passed unanimously.


SKYWEST LEASE ASSIGNMENT:  SkyWest currently holds the lease for United Express at MBS.  United has now decided that Air Wisconsin should hold several airport leases, including the one at MBS.  The current contract requires Commission approval of the assignment and such approval cannot be unreasonably withheld.


Mr. Nagel has had discussions with Air Wisconsin and their intent is to assume the entire lease, which makes this a clean transfer.  Air Wisconsin will staff the MBS location effective May 28, 2008, so the assignment will be effective as of that date.  This assignment will not impact MBS revenues, it will only change who is billed monthly.  It should also not directly impact the flight schedule.


Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to approve the assignment of the SkyWest lease to Air Wisconsin effective May 28, 2008.  Mr. Biltz seconded and the motion passed unanimously.


SKYWEST USE AGREEMENT:  Although SkyWest will no longer staff the MBS station, they will continue to fly some flights into MBS for United as the United Express carrier.  They will now need a Use Agreement similar to Mesa, which covers landing fees.  Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to approve a Use Agreement with SkyWest.  Mr. Biltz seconded and the motion passed unanimously.


GRANT #3708 PHASE I UTILITY BIDS:  As discussed at the April Commission meeting, water and sewer are planned to be constructed to the new terminal site.  The work is expected to take place this summer.


RS&H has designed the project and bids were received on May 8, 2008.  Thirteen bids were received for this work.  The engineers estimate was $1,107,609 for the project.  Based on a review of all the bids received, the recommendation from RS&H is to award the contract to the low bidder American Excavating, LTD of Saginaw, Michigan in the amount of $870,105.00.  A letter of recommendation was included in the packet.


Mr. Nagel stated that the FAA needed the bid numbers in by June 1st and RS&H did an excellent job preparing and getting the bids out in order to meet that timeline.  The State Capital Outlay Bill has not passed yet.  Bureau of Aeronautics staff in Lansing remain positive that it will pass but unsure of when.  Mr. Nagel stated that he would like to make the award of the contract contingent on completing the permitting issues with the township and passing of the State Capital Outlay Bill.  Mr. Nagel suggests approving it with the contingencies rather than waiting because if the Outlay Bill gets signed RS&H can continue to put the contract together with the low bid.  Mr. Lippert can review it, it can get signed, and get a Notice to Proceed.  If the Capital Outlay Bill does not get signed in a timely fashion it will have to be addressed at that time.  Funding would not be available to move forward.  There are other projects included in the grant which include the land reimbursement and the first payment for relocation of the FAA RCAG.  The grant would be $1.6 million and is on hold because of the State Capital Outlay Bill.  This is a statewide issue.


Mr. Biltz asked if there is another way to bypass the Capital Outlay Bill.  Mr. Nagel stated that the Michigan Airport Association is trying to get the airport portion of the bill segregated from colleges and universities and other capital improvements which has been unsuccessful so far.  If the State does not pass the Capital Outlay Bill there will be no funding for any airport in the state of Michigan for 2008.  A letter would be written to the FAA requesting that the entitlements be carried over which historically has been done.  Mr. Nagel would not guarantee it.


Questions were asked regarding the awarding of the bid.  Mr. Nagel explained that the FAA guidelines are followed; lowest bid that meets the qualifications.  RS&H received thirteen bids, they reviewed them, and the lowest qualified bid was from a local company. 


Mr. Lynch stated that this is the first step towards the building of the new facility.  It is important that a program be in place to insure that the activity at the airport stays healthy so a new facility isn’t being built with the mindset that “they will come.”  He stated that this is a signal for the marketing committee to get the activity in place prior to the construction of a new terminal. 


Mr. Krygier asked if there has been contact with the legislators regarding the Capital Outlay Bill.  Mr. Nagel stated that there is a debate in Lansing.  A couple of versions of the bill have been sent to either house with only the airport money in it, however it has been added to and keeps getting bounced back and forth.  The local legislators are in support; they understand how important it is for MBS and also to all the airports in the state.


Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to approve the bid of American Excavating, LTD in the amount of $870,105.00 for Phase I of the utility work and authorize the Chairman to sign all related paperwork. This motion is contingent on completing the permitting issues with the township and passing of the State Capital Outlay Bill.  Mr. Biltz seconded the motion with contingencies.  The Board passed the motion unanimously.  Chairman Distler added that commissioners should contact legislators with this issue.  Mr. Nagel agreed with Chairman Distler and stated that any help that can be obtained is appreciated.


CONSTRUCTION SUPERVISION CONTRACT:  The terminal design contract with RS&H does not cover construction administration and supervision.  A separate contract amendment is needed to cover the work at each phase of construction. 


The first contract amendment covers administration and supervision for Phase I of the utility work.  The fee for this portion of work is $112,000.  RS&H is also using two Michigan companies for various tasks included in this contract.


Mr. Nagel has reviewed the contract amendment and provided input to RS&H.  The contract is also subject to the review and approval of the MBS State Project Manager.


In summary, Survey Work, Quality Assurance Testing, Resident Project Representative, and Construction Administration are provided under this agreement.


Mr. Nagel stated that the motion should be contingent on the passing of the State Capital Outlay Bill, the permitting process with the township, and approval of the State Project Manager.  The State Project Manager informed Mr. Nagel that the contract has preliminary approval and expects formal approval before the end of the week.  Mr. Krygier made a motion to approve Amendment #1 to the RS&H contract for construction supervision and administration for Phase I of utility construction and authorize the Chairman to sign the related paperwork contingent upon passing of the State Capital Outlay Bill, the permitting process with the township, and approval of the State Project Manager.  Mr. Gwizdala seconded.  Chairman Distler asked whether the construction supervision contract is adjusted based on the actual bid of the construction.  Pat Frame of RS&H explained that the supervision is calculated on the amount of the work required for the supervision versus the cost of the construction.  When the bid for construction is lower or higher than anticipated the supervision amount would not change.  There being no further discussion, Chairman Distler called for the vote; motion passed unanimously.  


OLD BUSINESS:  Mr. Nagel stated that Bolger & Battle are in the process of completing an overall strategic plan.  He will meet with them on Friday to review the first draft.  Once Mr. Nagel feels comfortable with it, a Marketing Committee Meeting will be called.  He also stated that he is impressed with what he has seen early on with Bolger & Battle.


Mr. Nagel updated the board regarding the AIP Reauthorization in Washington, D.C.  Airports have been operating under continuing resolution which included contract authority so grants could be issued.  That resulted in the bid process having to be expedited this year.  AIP Reauthorization was brought up to Congress last week with debate.  It did not pass and was removed from the agenda in favor of the Farm Bill.  There is no extension for AIP collection or spending past June 2008.  Mr. Nagel feels confident that Congress will pass an extension for collection but not sure whether it will include spending.  Mr. Nagel will keep the board updated.




ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS:  Chairman Distler stated that one of the items the Marketing Committee is working with Fly MBS/Build MBS is to be sure MBS has a product that is acceptable to the public.  At a previous meeting, Mr. Nagel was asked to track canceled and delayed flights.  Chairman Distler stated that last month Northwest Airlines did exceptionally well.  NWA had 1% canceled flights and 2% delayed more than an hour.       


 Next regular meeting is scheduled for June 19, 2008.


ADJOURNMENT:  There being no further business, Mr. Gwizdala made a motion to adjourn.  Mr. Biltz seconded and the board unanimously passed the motion.  The meeting adjourned at 1:27 p.m.




                                                                                                                                                            Eugene F. Gwizdala, Secretary