Aviation Advisory Committee (AAC)
August 21, 2013
The Aviation Advisory Committee met on the above date with the following members present: Ted Rhodes (District 1), Mike Harris (District 2), Brian Watkins (District 3), Mike Wooley (District 4) and Chip Mapoles (District 5). County staff present: County Administrator (Hunter Walker), County Engineer (Roger Blaylock) and County Assistant Engineer (Michael Schmidt).
Watkins called the meeting to order at 5:08 p.m. The minutes of the June 19, 2013 meeting was approved unanimously.
Discussion of Proposed Airport Minimum Standards and Airport Rules and Regulations
Wooley said he had questions on three items. Under the airport rules and regulation draft, paragraph 4.2.1 under accidents, he said that there was no mention of FAA reporting. Blaylock asked if there was a requirement for reporting accidents on an airfield. Mapoles said he believes it is an airman’s issue and they are required to make the call. Harris asked at what level the county would want to be notified. The FAA requires if there is major structural damage only. If there is just minor damage, the county would need to decide at what level. Blaylock said if it involves public property, that would be the county’s responsibility and they would want to know about it. Blaylock said it would be at the committee’s recommendation. Watkins said since the reporting requirement for accidents is the owner/operator’s responsibility and not necessarily the facility’s, it wouldn’t be required to contact the county or the airport manager unless there was damage to any part of the facility, public property or structural damage to the airport which would cause a safety issue. Walker said from a Risk Management perspective, he was not sure how much we would need to be involved. Watkins said if the causal factor of the accident was something facility wise and was investigated by FAA, the report would have to go to the FAA for a ruling and then we would be notified.
Wooley referenced section 5.2.8 under Vehicle Operations questioned if we need a requirement stating if you are going to enter a taxiway or cross the runways, you would be required to get a magnetic number to place on the top of your vehicle and a two way hand held radio for prevent runway incursions. He added that this would be another check and balance and that other airports have these type requirements to let everyone know that they are authorized to be out there. Wooley also stated that we should possibly think about making hand held radios a requirement so we can notify everyone on the UNICOM that someone is entering the taxiway. Mapoles said that he thought it was a good idea but the problem is that most everyone that has a hangar is using the taxiway. It would involve stopping at the FBO to get a number every time you go to pull out your plane. Harris said he didn’t think the FBO would want to be the enforcement agency and it might create problems.
Wooley referenced the Aeronautical Business Activities Draft and stated that air ambulance had been listed and defined but on this draft he did not see it listed and asked if it was an oversight. He added that it had been previously listed under definitions. Blaylock said it would not be a problem to add it.
Harris said he would like to go back to the discussion on crossing the runway. He said that he didn’t think it was a bad idea to make a UNICOM call for crossing the runway but as far as the taxiway goes, people are going back and forth to their hangars. He said that it could boggle up the UNICOM frequency if everyone that was moving from their hangar was making a call. He added that we may want to look at a requiring a portable radio when crossing the runway. Blaylock asked for clarification on whether it is even if you are crossing on each of the extreme ends. Harris said it is really not a bad idea especially if you have aircraft in the pattern. Blaylock said we are requiring that on opposite ends of the active runways but asked about making the call in addition at that location and Harris replied yes, especially if there are students in the pattern.
Rhodes had a question about preventive maintenance, specifically changing fuel lines or fuel filters in the T-hangars. He asked if there were any provisions or a designated area with fire extinguishers where one could change a fuel line which would be away from everything. Blaylock said we do not have such an area. He said that everything at Peter Prince is either under lease or is common area taxiway. Blaylock said this is something that has come up in the past where people have brought fuel on to the airfield and refueled. He said they are actually refueling on the taxiways which is not an allowed use because that is considered a common area. He added that at the current time as stated in our Master Plan, there is not an area that we can designate. Blaylock said they would need to steer toward an FBO area. Ignacio said the area directly in front of the hangar could be a consideration in an emergency situation.
Watkins asked about taking action on the items discussed. Wooley said the air ambulance item would not require a motion and can be handled administratively. Wooley made a motion to add a requirement to call UNICOM when crossing the runway and it was approved without objection. It was agreed to leave the reporting requirements as written. The last item was whether or not to have a designated maintenance area in front of the T-hangar. Blaylock said that he didn’t feel that was an issue in an emergency situation as long as change outs were not being done in a common taxiway which could block tenants.
Mapoles questioned Section 6.1.(2), Minimum Standard Requirements, – “The prospective FBO operator must have demonstrated at least two (2) years of experience in owning and operating a fixed based operation or comparable facility at a similar or larger sized airport and be authorized to conduct business in the State of Florida”, stating no one would be able to run an FBO if they just wanted to start the business and to his knowledge, the two FBOs that we have now did not have any experience before they started. Mapoles stated that he did not think it was logical that two years of experience was required before you can run an FBO. Blaylock asked about aviation experience versus FBO and Watkins said one could have two years of experience with an FBO which would mean that you could have worked for one. It was agreed to delete the wording “owning and operating” and change it to two years of experience with fixed based operation.
Rhodes asked if the existing FBOs that are in place now will already be grandfathered in or will they have to come up to standards. Blaylock said with current edits that we sent out in this document the two should be consistent. That was our goal and direction was not to make them non-compliant so we believe we have consistency.
Harris asked for clarification on Minimum Standard Requirements for Aeronautical Business Activities: General Operational Requirements, Section 5.1 and whether or not a specialized technician can be hired to come out and work on aircraft in one’s own hangar. He said that as written it would be a prohibition for someone to come through the gate and go into a hangar. Ignacio said that if it’s a specialized type of service, it would be assessed by the county and more than likely permission would be given. Harris said some changes could be made to make it a little more specific because we don’t want to limit people from being able to bring outside specialists in to work on their aircraft. Ignacio said we could add language on that basis.
Watkins asked the committee if the changes discussed should be put in draft form and presented at the next meeting. Blaylock said he would like to see the committee move forward. A motion was made to accept the changes made today and it was approved without objection.
Mapoles asked if it was normal for the south gate to be open and Blaylock said that it should be closed and secure. He said that he would look into the matter.
Harris asked if the code key worked the same as the other one and Blaylock said that it did. He added that if it did not work, to get with Tammy Simmons.
Mapoles asked how we were looking in regard to vacancies. Walker said it is remarkably high. Blaylock said we will be putting an RFP out for hangars on the east side, anywhere from 6-10 hangars depending on how far the money goes.
Blaylock reported that an inmate crew would be doing some service grass cutting and placing herbicide on the taxiways. Also on Wednesday morning there will be a representative from DOT conducting a paving assessment. He added that this is something done on an annual basis and DOT will provide us with a report.
Walker stated the next meeting will be at 5:00 p.m. on September 18, 2013. Meeting adjourned at 5:45 p.m.