Aviation Advisory Committee
June 20, 2007
The Aviation Advisory Committee met on the above date with the following members present: Chairman Carlos Diaz and members Jimmie Beavers, Mike Harris, and Clay McCutchan. Also present were the County Engineer (Roger Blaylock) and Administrative Services Manager (Tammy Simmons). Chairman Diaz called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m.
McCutchan moved approval of the minutes from the March 21, 2007 meeting; Harris seconded, and the vote carried unanimously. (4-0)
Diaz asked if any decision has been made concerning corporate hanger rentals. Blaylock said no decision has been made. He said this issue is one of the items that is set to be discussed tonight.
FBO (Fixed Base Operator) Issues
Davis Glass said the gate at Peter Prince Airport is working. He said the airport is heavily involved in the IFS (Initial Flight Screening) Program for military students, and in two weeks the airport will be getting 12 Air Force navigators. Glass said the syllabus has changed effective June 1 st and the navigators now get 25 hours of flying time versus the previous 13 hours. He said if students are capable of soloing, they will solo. Glass said soloing is not mandatory.
Glass said Peter Prince Airport has procured a stand by generator for providing fuel from its two tanks in the event there is a massive power failure. He said this will enable fueling
capabilities during extensive power outages.
Beavers said he put a new lock on his hanger and within a week it was tampered with. He said he notified the proper authorities and was told something would be done; however,
nothing has been done yet. Diaz asked if Beaver’s hanger is the only hanger being tampered with. Simmons said no, but it is the only hanger that is tampered with on a continual basis. Diaz said he is not sure how the County can address security of hangers at the airport. He said it is impossible to keep an individual from getting into the airport. Diaz asked if securityat the airport is being addressed by County staff. Blaylock said yes. He said it is his understanding the Santa Rosa County Sheriff is investigating problems at the airport, and staff can follow up on this issue. McCutchen asked if the County Attorney has determine if any federal laws are being broken by these break-ins as requested by the Aviation Advisory Committee at a previous meeting. Blaylock said he is not sure. Diaz said he will emailthe CountyAttorney, TomDannheisser, about this issue.
He asked Beavers if anything in the hanger was taken. Beavers said no. He said he has a security system, but for some reason it did not go off. Beavers said this last lock was the third lock he has had to put on his hanger. Diaz asked for clarification on tenants being able to put locks on hangers. Simmons said tenants can install their own lock as long as
administrative services is provided a key and the lock meets fire safety codes. She said there are certain locks that cannot be installed for safety reasons. Simmons said tenants can have as much security as they want as long as administrative services is provided a way to enter the hanger.
Blaylock said the County has received bids for the 24 T-hangers at Peter Prince Airport and a recommendation will be made to the Board of County Commissioners on June 28. He said Southeaster Construction, Inc. will be awarded the contract. Blaylock said the State will be funding 80% of the $1.139 million this project will cost. He said he anticipates construction will begin around the first of August with a 280 day completion time frame.
Diaz said Mr. Hertzog has put in a request to the County to see if he can rent one of the corporate hangers at Peter Prince Airport for a lower rental amount than is typical. He said Hertzog thought the County might be willing to rent one of the corporate hangers at a lower price due to these hangers being empty for quite some time. Diaz asked if the Aviation Advisory Committee has any objection to the County renting a corporate hanger for a lower price to Mr. Hertzog. Harris said he felt more discussion is needed on this issue. He said the object for the County would be to get someone who is renting two hangers to go into one of the corporate hangers, in order to free up two regular hangers. Harris said preference should be given to renters who are presently renting two regular hangers at Peter Prince Airport. Blaylock said a recommendation to the Board of County Commissioners is needed from the Aviation Advisory Committee about leasing corporate hangers to non-corporate entities. He said he agrees that individuals currently leasing multiple hangers should get first priority. Blaylock said there are a number of people who have expressed interest in renting corporate hangers. He said if the committee wishes to go forth with this, a FRP (Request For Proposal) might be warranted. Blaylock said three corporate hangers will be empty by the end of this month. Simmons said it would be beneficial to the County and Peter Prince Airport to free up the most number of hangers possible. She said the decision should not necessarily be based on the number of planes an individual owns but on the number of hangers that will be freed up for the hanger waiting list. Simmons discussed Mr. Hertzog’s present hanger rentals at Peter Prince Airport. She said it is not going to benefit the County to only free up one hanger. Simmons said the County needs to free up two or three hangers for this proposal to benefit the County.
Diaz asked what will happen if a corporation wants to lease a corporate hanger at the full amount typically paid to the County. Simmons said in the past, the tenants that were in the corporate hangers on a temporary lease were given 30 days to vacate. She said she does not recommend this policy under the present proposal because the tenant will be giving up their hanger and will not be on the hanger waiting list. Simmons said she does not recommend putting all corporate hangers on a permanent lease. She said most people who presently rent regular hangers at the airport will not want to switch to a temporary lease. Simmons said the only people who might be interested in a temporary lease situation is someone who does not currently have a hanger. Blaylock said the County is only committed to the terms of the lease while the hanger is occupied. He said once the hangers become vacant the terms can be readdressed. Beavers asked if there is any difference between corporate and single hanger leases. Simmons said all leases are the same, but in the past the corporate hangers were for corporate planes only. Diaz said it is very unlikely a corporation will want to come in and rent a corporate hanger at Peter Prince Airport because the runway is only3,750 feet. He said the runway end lights need to be moved to the end of the runwayto make it 4,000 feet.
Diaz said there are two issues that need to be determined. He said the first is determining if the committee has any objection to changing the corporate hanger leases from temporary to permanent. Diaz said the second issue is to determine the process that needs to be implemented to accomplish this proposal. He said only the first issue is being addressed at this meeting. McCutchen said he will support the change if it is done fairly. Simmons said it will be done in a fair way through an RFP. Beavers said he has two concerns. He said the County might lose out if a corporation who is willing to pay a higher price wants to come in and rent a corporate hanger. Beavers said the other concern involves individuals not on the lease using the corporate hangers in addition to the lessee. He said he will support this proposal if it is done in an equitable manner.
There was discussion on the size of the corporate hangers at Peter Prince Airport and on how ownership of a plane is determined. Simmons said the present lease agreement does
not specify how proof of ownership is determined. She said she has added language to the lease to specifically say what and how proof of ownership will have to be provided to staff. Simmons said these proposed lease options have been provided to the Aviation Advisory Committee for their consideration. She said whoever submits the proposal for the lease is the leaseholder.
There was discussion on the costs ofleasing hangers at Peter Prince Airport.
McCutchen discussed a hanger mates club in Crestview that started out renting a large hanger, and theynow own the hanger. He said if the right group got together, a number of planes could successfully be put in the large corporate hangers. Diaz asked how the County will address lease payments if people within the group choose to leave and abandon their portion of the lease. Blaylock said the cost will fall on whoever remains in the hanger group. Simmons said even if there was only one person left in a group, that one person will be responsible for the set fee for the corporate hanger as submitted in the hanger rental proposal.
McCutchen moved for staff to study the issue of corporate hangers being leased to non-corporate entities and for staff to come up with viable options for the Aviation Advisory Committee to vote on before being forwarded to the Board of County Commissioners for approval; Beavers seconded, and the vote carried unanimously. (4-0)
Simmons said lease options were sent to all Aviation Advisory Committee members for review. She distributed copies of the lease options staff came up with as requested by the
Aviation Advisory Committee. Simmons said the lease marked with a “1” is the current lease Peter Prince Airport presently uses. She said the lease marked with a “2” is with changes in a timeline format including all changes incorporating any additional ideas from herself pertaining to improving fire safety and lease compliance issues better. Simmons said the County Attorney stated that the County can get rid ofa lease or evict a tenant at any time so a lease compliance policy as requested by the committee is not needed. She said she felt the lease agreement needs to be more clear concerning lease compliance and fire safety. Simmons briefly described the format of the “2” lease option. She said the lease marked with a “3” is a cleaned up format of “2” arranged by categories to make it easier to comprehend.
McCutchen suggested the Aviation Advisory Committee review all three lease options and come back at the next meeting for a decision on a new lease to be implemented at Peter Prince Airport. All members were in agreement.
There was discussion on home built and inoperative airplanes in hangers at Peter Prince Airport. Diaz said the language in the lease needs to address this issue. He said he hates to see hangers tied up as storage spaces. McCutchen said the purpose of the hangers at Peter Prince Airport is to allow coverage for operating airplanes. Diaz asked if there is more than one homebuilt plane at the airport. Simmons said yes.
Simmons said the current lease states that a tenant can store anything that is personally owned in the hanger. She said she is proposing that the only storage allowed in hangers will be support for the airplane. Simmons said fire safety inspections fail because of the amount and type of items being stored in the hangers. Diaz said he felt Simmons’ proposal is too restrictive. Simmons discussed the type of things being stored in hangers. Diaz said tenants should be evicted if theycontinually fail fire inspections. He said he felt there is already a policy to cover this problem. Diaz said there are a lot of issues the Aviation Advisory Committee needs to discuss concerning hanger lease agreement revisions.
There was more discussion on homebuilt and inoperative airplanes being stored in hangers at Peter Prince Airport. Diaz said he has a problem with the lease forcing people to fly aircraft a minimum number of hours. He said as long as an aircraft is airworthy, it should be okay to store in a hanger. McCutchen suggested raising hanger rent to weed out non-flying plane owners. Diaz said he felt this would not be fair to present tenants who are flying their aircrafts. Davis said there are 8% to 10% of any airport population that will not fly, fix, or sell their aircrafts.
McCutchen said he wants the Aviation Advisory Committee to discuss the issue of homebuilt and inoperative aircraft being stored in hangers for extensive amounts of time at the next meeting.
McCutchen moved to table the issue of homebuilt and inoperative aircraft being stored in hangers at Peter Prince Airport for extensive amounts of time until the next Aviation Advisory Committee meeting; Beavers seconded, and the vote carried unanimously. (4-0)
McCutchen asked if a draft letter in opposition of user fees has been done as discussed at the March 21, 2007 meeting. Blaylock said he has not seen anything yet. He said he will check on this.
The next scheduled meeting of the Aviation Advisory Committee will be on Wednesday, July18, 2007 at 5:00 p.m.
There being no further business to come before the Aviation Advisory Committee at this time, the meeting adjourned at 5:50 p.m.