January 19, 2005
The Aviation Advisory Committee met on the above date with the following members present: Chairman Jimmie Beavers, Carlos Diaz, and Marty Martin. Also present were the County Administrator (Hunter Walker), County Engineer (Roger Blaylock), and Administrative Services Manager (Tammy Simmons). Chairman Beavers called the meeting to order at 5:05 p.m. He said this will be an informal discussion meeting only, because there is not a quorum.
Blaylock said repairs on the T hangars are underway. He said Triple A Steel is the contractor, and they are currently working on buildings A through G. Blaylock said the roof components are completed and repairs to the doors are underway. He said the contractor is coordinating with the hangar tenants. Blaylock said repairs are progressing slower than the county would like, but the contractor has other obligations the county was aware of going into the contract. Beavers said hangar G-4 still has a hole in the roof. He asked who should be contacted. Blaylock said Tammy Simmons, Stephen Furman, or myself.
Blaylock said the fence repairs have been authorized. He said Soley and Jones Fence Company Inc., the county’s fence contractor, will be doing the perimeter fence repairs at Peter Prince Airport.
Blaylock said the authorized construction projects will go out for bid this spring. He said the runup aprons, the realignment of taxiway A, the runway safety area, and the runway pavement markings are the four projects funded and prioritized for this year.
Blaylock said the two remaining issues are the Super Unicom and the GCO (Ground Communications Outlet). He said patent violation lawsuits are ongoing with the vendor and the supplier of the GCO. Blaylock said the county is going to work to the bottom of the lawsuit or come back to the board with a recommendation to ditch the digital unit, purchase an analog unit, and pay the difference. He said funding is through FDOT (Florida Department of Transportation) as a match through a JPA (Joint Participation Agreement). Blaylock said there is a timeline, and the county does not want to lose the funding. He said there is an active Unicom frequency the airport can work with in the interim.
Beavers asked for an update on the Super Unicom. Blaylock said there is a defective part in the Super Unicom. He said the county had the frequency tuning changed. Blaylock said Ingram Electric and Gary Loff with Super Unicom are working out the issues. He said he has not contacted Ingram Electric to find out what the final resolution is. Blaylock said he felt the Super Unicom will be working before the GCO issue is resolved.
Diaz asked if the county can go ahead and purchase another GCO from another company. Blaylock said he will have to talk to the county’s legal department about canceling the purchase order for failure to perform and produce. He said he will discuss this with the county attorney.
Davis Glass showed the committee a picture of the damage to Peter Prince Airport caused by Hurricane Ivan. He discussed the damage to the hangers. Glass said he contacted Florida Fish and Game concerning the herd of deer at the airport. He said Florida Fish and Game said they can harvest the deer and donate the meat to needy families. Glass said he has not sited the herd since the last meeting, but he knows the deer are still there.
Glass said the CAP (Civil Air Patrol) has one of their aircraft permanently based at Peter Prince. He said they are flying almost every day checking for fires.
Pensacola Flight Watch Inc. Issues
Dale Holbert read an e-mail he sent to Roger Blaylock, Tammy Simmons, Stephen Furman, Shirley Powell, and Hunter Walker. He said it is a letter of thanks on behalf of Pensacola Flight Watch Inc. Holbert said there is another entity that is going to be expressing their thanks to the Aviation Advisory Committee, county staff, and the county commissioners for their efforts at Peter Prince Airport.
Holbert said when researched, there were two GCO units available at a reasonable cost. He said Avtech Marketing has a digital unit and AIRINC (Aeronautical Radio Incorporated) has an analog unit. Holbert said it is his understanding the AIRINC unit is a reliable unit and can be serviced within a reasonable timeframe.
Holbert said Flight Watch Inc. sent material to Blaylock’s office concerning some much needed changes in the U.S. Airport Facility Directory and the Florida Airport Facility Directory. He said Shirley Powell in Blaylock’s office forwarded the changes to both directories. Holbert said in the U.S. Airport Facility Directory changes should show up in March. He discussed the changes made and the changes that were not made in the Florida directory.
Holbert asked Blaylock if the runway end identification lights (REILS) are in this year’s improvements. Blaylock said the REILS are in the program for next year, but the bids and funding will determine which year the REILS will be installed.
Beavers asked if activation of the runway lights is still on frequency 122.8. Blaylock said yes, and the PAPI lights stay on 24/7. Diaz said he would like input from everyone on the best way to set up the runway lights. Blaylock said Ingram Electric is going to switch out the radio unit transmitter for activation of the runway lights with three clicks on frequency 122.975. Martin said the photocell is a great thing except when it does not come on during cloudy days with reduced visibility. He said the photocell is fine as long as the manual override is available.
Beavers asked if any progress has been made on the automatic gate and security system. Blaylock said he will e-mail everyone on the committee with an update. Beavers asked if the outside fire extinguishers have been checked lately. Simmons said the county is waiting until the hangars are repaired to install the fire extinguishers on the outside of the hangers. She said the extinguishers are not expired.
Walker asked the committee to make a recommendation on how the county should handle leasing the new hangars. He said there are several options, and he discussed the options listed below.
1. Citizens on the waiting list can have first option.
2. Current tenants can lease the new hangars on a “first come first serve basis.”
3. Some type of lottery.
Walker said county staff felt it is time for the lease fees to be surveyed with other airports to see if the county is charging comparable rates. He said county staff also felt the new hangars should have a higher fee as they will be constructed to be more desirable than the current hangars. Walker discussed whether there should be a limit on how many hangars one entity can lease. Simmons discussed how a tenant can circumvent the current waiting list system. Walker asked the committee to consider the above issues for discussion at future meetings.
Diaz said he felt enough hangars should be built to accommodate the waiting list. There was discussion on grant funding and increasing the lease fees to be used towards building additional hangars. Beavers said there are 24 new hangars coming online and 24 to 36 more could be built without increasing the lease fee. Blaylock said the request submitted to FDOT was for funding of 12 new hangars every year for several years. He said once the safety issues are addressed, new hangars will be top priority.
Holbert said in the last airport improvement program passed by congress, there was supposed to be FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) funds available for hangar construction on general aviation airports. He asked if this is being looked into. Blaylock said the airport consultant is checking on this funding. He said every funding opportunity will be looked at. Blaylock said the county has the 80/20 commitment with FDOT, and with FAA funding, the county may be able to build 24 hangars next year.
Holbert suggested reviewing the hangar waiting list to see if there are people on the list no longer needing a hangar. Simmons said letters are sent every 6 months to update the waiting list.
There being no further business to come before the Aviation Advisory Committee at this time, the meeting adjourned at 5:45 p.m.