Aviation Advisory Board
April 19, 2006
The Aviation Advisory Committee met on the above date with the following members present: Vice Chairman James Hopmeier and members Jimmie Beavers, Bryon Woram, and Marty Martin. Also present were the County Engineer (Roger Blaylock) and Administrative Services Manager (Tammy Simmons). Vice Chairman Hopmeier called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m.
Woram moved approval of the minutes from the February 15, 2006 meeting; Beavers seconded, and the vote carried unanimously (4-0).
Hopmeier discussed comments made in a local newspaper regarding Santa Rosa County’s contribution to the Aviation Park in Escambia County. He said he felt funding to support this park is a valid expenditure of the county. Hopmeier said something that can not be put in Santa Rosa County is being built in Escambia County. Martin said the donation went to Flight Watch which is located in Escambia County. Hopmeier said in the future the Aviation Advisory Board needs to do a better job of informing people in the communityabout projects such as this and all information regarding our local airport.
Beavers said the Aviation Park will pay dividends for generations to come. He said the investment the county has made on our behalf is a bargain. Beavers and Hopmeier said this committee is indebted to Flight Watch and Dale Holbert for all their efforts.
Pensacola Flight WatchInc. Issues
Dale Holbert with Flight Watch Inc. said Flight Watch appreciates the support of the Aviation Advisory Board and county staff regarding the Aviation Discovery Park. He said Santa Rosa County’s contribution will help fund construction ofPhase II of the park. Holbert said as of today Flight Watch has raised 70% of the Phase II funds. He said the ground breaking ceremony took place on March 31, 2006 with Commissioner Cole in attendance.
Holbert said Phase I should be complete by the end of June, and Flight Watch is hoping to begin Phase II as soon as Phase I is completed. He said the park will be a real asset to the community. Holbert said the park will be available to all students, schools, and citizens of Santa Rosa County. He said Santa Rosa County’s contribution constitutes about 5% of the funding.
Holbert said the Flight Watch Safety Committee spearheaded by Bill Stinson is working on retention of the TIS (Traffic Information Service) at Pensacola Regional Airport. He said this service is presently scheduled to be discontinued in early 2007. Holbert said there are efforts around the country to maintain the TIS, and he discussed why the Flight Watch Safety Committee felt there is a need to retain the TIS.
Holbert said Flight Watch is continuing to work with AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association) regarding the post elimination of the ASR (Airport Surveillance Radar) approaches at Pensacola Regional Airport and Peter Prince Airport. He discussed the advantages of full ASR approaches.
Holbert said the Flight Watch Board intends to meet with airport staff at their next regular board meeting regarding the installation of PAPI (Precision Approach Path Indicator) lights on 1-7 at Pensacola Regional Airport. He said this is considered to be a very important safety item for allarea pilots.
Davis Glass discussed the weekly, Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. Contractor Meetings at the FBO (Fixed Base Operator) building. He said the contractor is a little behind with construction and discussed the reasons for the delay. Blaylock said the county is managing the construction project, and it is important for Glass to attend the meetings from a safety standpoint.
Glass asked if there is a provision to move the corner tie down by the line shack. He said any aircraft in this area can create an obstruction and requested the tie down be moved. Glass asked the access route to the new hangars. Blaylock said the new hangars will be accessed through the automated gate, onto the taxiways, and into the hangars. He said the access directions will be given to the tenants when they sign their leases. Blaylock said explicit directions to the hangars will be included in the lease agreements.
Glass said the shoulders of the overruns on the north and south ends of the runway will be graded in about two weeks. He said this will be done at night, and he anticipates the runway being closed from sunset to sunrise for three or four days. Glass said the FBO can NOTAM (Notices to Airmen) this information.
Glass discussed his letter regarding a request to occupy hangar H-2 to establish an Avionics Repair Shop at Peter Prince Field (Attachment in File). He said there has been a desire to have an avionics shop at the airport for thirteen years. Glass discussed Mr. Jeffers avionics shop experience in detail, and said Jeffers has all the necessary equipment to run an avionics shop. Glass said the airport will have to acquire a repair station status. He said there will be two or three additional technicians employed in this shop and discussed the revenue the shop will generate for the county. He said this is an opportunitythat the FBO has been trying to achieve for years. Glass said the FBO would like to get Jeffers started in the corporate hangar (H-2). He said once the business is established an installation hangar will be constructed behind the FBO shop. He discussed the advantages of having the repair shop at Peter Prince Airport.
Hopmeier asked if this is considered an appropriate use of the corporate hangar and if this type of operation will open up other hangars for enterprises other than aircraft storage.
Blaylock said that will be a policy decision of the Board of County Commissioners. He said the repair shop is contrary to the existing hangar agreements. Blaylock said there have been previous problems with commercial activities in the hangars, and the hangars are not designed orconstructed to be used as maintenance and repair facilities.
Glass said precedence has already been set. He discussed a restoration facility that was previously housed in one of the hangars. Beavers discussed a previous business in a hangar that Glass was opposed to. He also discussed his reasons why he felt commercial activities should not be conducted in airport hangars. His concerns included a situation regarding Jeffers’ work history in Pensacola, public access to the hangar, problems with the hangar being environmentally controlled, fire protection equipment, public restrooms, and ADA requirements. Glass addressed each of Beavers’ concerns. Beavers said he felt the hangar does not qualify under FAA requirements.
Hopmeier said he is not convinced a hangar is the right place for a commercial operation; however, any commercial enterprise on the airport will be a benefit to the county when it is in the right place and constructed the right way. He said he is not in favor of changing the rules. Hopmeier said if the rules change, they change for everybody. He said it is a great idea to bring this business and any other business to the airport, but he does not feel business should be conducted in the hangars. Hopmeier discussed the tremendous resources at the airport and the Industrial Park.
Glass said the requirements and the configuration are in the process ofbeing submitted to FAA. He said FAA will be down to look at the building. Glass said they have already
taken the interior dimensions and the type of construction for submission to FAA. Hopmeier said FAA is only one party that has to be satisfied. He discussed the County
criteria that will have to be met and problems with controlling access to the airport.
Martin said this is a commercial enterprise, and it does not belong in the hangars. He suggested Glass contact TEAM Santa Rosa regarding a site at the Industrial Park. Woram said he will not agree to allow any type of commercial operation in a hangar. Hopmeier suggested the avionics shop be built on FBO propertyor in the Industrial Park. He said he supports the avionics shop but not in the hangars. There was continued discussion regarding the location of the avionics shop.
Blaylock said there will be ample opportunities for aviation related industry to go into the Aviation Commerce Park. He recommended Glass contact TEAM Santa Rosa.
Martin moved denial of an avionics shop in an airport hangar; Woram seconded; and the vote carried unanimously (4-0).
Martin announced Life Flight will be expanding to Evergreen and Niceville Hospital. He asked everyone to be aware of these kinds of flights when in these areas.
There being no further business to come before the Aviation Advisory Committee at this time, the meeting adjourned at 5:40 p.m.