Aviation Advisory Committee
March 21, 2007
The Aviation Advisory Committee met on the above date with the following members present: Chairman Carlos Diaz, Vice Chairman Randel Compton and members Jimmie Beavers, Mike Harris, Marty Martin, and Clay McCutchan. Also present were the County Administrator (Hunter Walker), County Engineer (Roger Blaylock), and Administrative Services Manager
(Tammy Simmons). ChairmanDiaz called the meeting to order at 5:00 p.m.
Harris moved approval of the minutes from the January 17, 2007 meeting; Beavers seconded, and the vote carried unanimously. (6-0)
Diaz thanked the Aviation Advisory Committee for nominating him as Chairman to the committee.
Pensacola Flight Watch, Inc. Issues
Dale Holbert with Pensacola Flight Watch, Inc. gave a brief update of what is happening at Pensacola Regional Airport. He said runway 1735 is under construction, and he hopes it will be completed by August. Holbert said Pensacola Regional Airport has made a formal application for a PAPI (Precision Approach Path Indicator) at the airport. He said there are going to be more T-hangers built at Pensacola Regional Airport. Holbert presented a Video and Power Point Presentation on the Flightwatch Discovery Park Project. He discussed what will be in the park and the layout of the park. He encouraged everyone to visit the Flightwatchwebsite. Holbert said they have most of the funds for the park’s construction. He said there will be a Plaza of Honor in the park which will include a paved block area withthe names ofdonors engraved on the blocks. Holbert said included in the Plaza of Honor will be a Hall of Honor that will list the 10 initial honorees. Holbert said signs are being designed and constructed, and he hopes they will be put up at the park entrances very soon. He said the Flightwatch Discovery Park will be open from dawn to dusk. Holbert said they have been working on this project with Pensacola Regional Airport, FAA (Federal Aviation Administration), the City of Pensacola, and Escambia County for 6 years. Holbert said the main reason for this park is to spark interest in aviation.
Holbert said the problem with the gate at Peter Prince Airport is a safety issue. He said the only other pending issue at Peter Prince Airport is the hanger bids.
FBO (Fixed Base Operator)Issues
Davis Glass said the gate at Peter Prince Airport is being manually opened by tenants and this is tearing up the gate. He said due to tenants tripping the circuit breakers to keep the gate open, he is considering putting a padlock on the circuit breaker box. Glass said as of right now the gate is working. Simmons said the gate works intermittently.
Glass said the stripping on the runway has made a big difference. He said the stripping can be clearly seen from the air.
Glass said they received the certificate from the State inspection of the airport. He said it was noted that the north threshold marking is incorrect. Glass said he believes the issue is the
threshold being the wrong color. Glass said the FBO did very well in the inspection, and there were only a few minor issues that were discovered.
Blaylock said bids will be received for 24 T-hangers on April 24 th , 2007. He said hopefully the hangers will be completed within the next few months.
Simmons said the issue of who will get priority for the new hangers was discussed a few months ago, and the committee decided the hangers would be offered to the tenants in the order they came to Peter Prince Airport. She said at the time of the decision by the committee, there were already 5 people on a list for the hangers. Simmons said those 5 tenants will remain at the top of the list and the rest of the tenants wanting new hangers will be added to the list as determined by their length of time at Peter Prince Airport.
Diaz asked if only one fire extinguisher is required for each hanger. Simmons said yes, but the fire extinguishers must be certified and tagged. Diaz asked if the issue of egress pertains to hangers, which are basically storage areas, like it does to housing. Blaylock said yes.
Beavers discussed his problems with hanger security. He said he wants to bring this problem to the committee’s attention. Beavers asked what can be done for better security. Blaylock said this is a matter for the Sheriff’s Department. He said the sheriff can charge a perpetrator with burglary or breaking and entering if the airplane is not touched; however, once the airplane is touched it is considered a federal crime issue. McCutchen said he would like the County Attorney to look into the matter.
McCutchen moved for the County Attorney to look into the issue of Federal Laws being broken at Peter Prince Airport in regards to hangers being broken into; Beavers seconded, and the vote carried unanimously. (6-0)
There was discussion on the Aviation Advisory Committee’s authority to make decisions on the operations and budget of Peter Prince Airport.
McCutchen voiced his concern as to whether Simmons will have enough resources to handle the extra added hangers. Martin asked Simmons if she has any authority to monetarily fine lease violations or if she can only send out warning letters. Walker said lease violations and evictions are presently sent to the County Attorney. He said the Board of County Commissioners can possibly look at some type of citation for lease violations. Martin said he would like Walker to get with the Board of County Commissioners to come up with some type of action that can be taken for habitual lease violators. McCutchen said he would like a safetystandard established for fire extinguishers and a contractor hired who will be responsible for supplying and maintaining the fire extinguishers. He said this additional cost should be added to the rent for the hangers. Simmons said sending out letters for violations does help.
There was discussion concerning the problem with tenants putting locks on their hangers and staff not being able to get in for inspections. McCutchen said consequences need to be added to the lease agreement for violators. Martin said all violations need to have financial consequences.
Diaz made a motion for county staff to come up with a policy regarding repeat lease offenders and possible evictions for offenders with multiple violations of their lease agreements, and for the policy to be brought before the Aviation Advisory Committee for review before being brought to the Board of County Commissioners for a vote; Beavers seconded, andthe vote carried unanimously. (6-0)
There was more discussion on the authority of the Aviation Advisory Committee.
Holbert said the FAA has completely changed their safety program. He said the new FAAST (Federal Aviation Administration Safety Team) concept has been implemented. Holbert
suggested the committee members go to the FAAST website and make themselves aware of what is going on with this program. He said they are trying to create a new safety program for general aviation.
Compton said according to AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association) magazine, user fees have been proposed for general aviation. He said AOPA has voiced its opposition to the user fees, and he asked if the committee would like to take a stand (as a committee and individually) to support the opposition of user fees. McCutchen asked if the County would allow the committee to speak as a committee on a political issue such as this. Blaylock said not as a committee. He encouraged the Aviation Advisory Committee to draft a letter to the Board of County Commissioners for ratification and approval.
McCutchen made a motion for Compton to draft a letter in opposition of user fees to be brought back before the Aviation Advisory Committee and then forwarded to the Board of County Commissioners for approval; Beavers seconded, and the vote carried unanimously. (6-0)
McCutchen asked if the Aviation Advisory Committee has ever recommended commendations for citizens who support aviation activities in Santa Rosa County to the Board of County
Comissioners. Walker said he believes the committee has recommended at least two citizens who received commendations by the Board of County Commissioners for their service and support for aviation. McCutchen said the committee should make sure people are recognized for their support and contributions to aviation.
The next scheduled meeting of the Aviation Advisory Committee will be on Wednesday, April 18, 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 6:00p.m.