Airport discusses full service charge, overnight hangar fees
December 16, 2018
The Alva Airport Commission had to table most of their agenda items Monday due to the absence of a Garver Engineering representative. Instead they spent extra time discussing some ideas suggested by Airport Manager Tyson Tucker.
Present for the Dec. 10 meeting were Chairman Dale Logsdon and Caleb Mosburg, Kelly Parker and Paul Kinzie. Terry Turner was absent.
Parker gave the city council report. He said about 150 attended the employee recognition banquet. He reported the council will be appointing representatives to the strategic land use task force. The city offices are still in temporary quarters in the Professional Building while work is being done on the HVAC system.
City Business Manager Joe Don Dunham told the board the Federal Aviation Administration requires that airports go out for bids for engineering services every five years. His office is working on those documents.
Tucker reported the airport had $17,516.66 in fuel and oil sales in November including $8,154.34 of 100LL and $9,041.60 of Jet A.
Full Service Fuel Charge
The manager said he had some “things to toss around.” He said in the past with the old fuel truck there wasn’t much maintenance expense. With the more modern trucks, there are more costs.
He suggested the airport add a small charge to fuel sales pumped from the trucks. He said Alva is the only airport in the area that doesn’t have an extra charge for full service. He defined full service as taking trucks to the planes to pump fuel as opposed to pilots taxiing their aircraft to the fuel pumps.
Tucker said sometimes pilots will ask that a fuel truck come to their hangar and need only five gallons of fuel. He said it probably costs more to start up the truck and drive it to the plane than the airport can make on such a small sale. Currently about 40 percent of the fuel is pumped from trucks.
Tucker said Ponca City adds a 25 cent surcharge and Sundance charges 30 cents more. He suggested a full service markup of 20 cents per gallon. This would apply only to the 100LL as the Jet A fueling is all done from the truck and the full service charge is already there.
Explaining the fuel truck maintenance costs, Tucker said filters have to be replaced every year. The filters for the trucks and fuel pump cost over $1,200. Hoses have to be replaced every ten years at a cost of $2,200. These are in addition to the usual expenses for tires, oil and repairs.
Logsdon said he’ll have the matter put on the January meeting agenda and perhaps have a public comment period so fuel purchasers can voice opinions.
Overnight Hangar Fees
Tucker also wanted some guidance on overnight hangar fees. He said there are still two or three spots available in the round top hangar. Currently, the airport only has monthly fees.
He suggested the airport charge $10 for one night with additional nights at $5 each. That way ten nights would be $60. The current monthly rate is $38.50 in the community hangar. Tucker said he thought there should be a higher charge for short-term hangar use because of the need to move the tractor and to tow the aircraft in and out.
Parker said he thought longer term rentals should be more cost effective with higher fees for shorter terms. Board members said they’d like to find out what rates are being charged at neighboring airports. This item will likely be on the next agenda also.
Deicing for Jets
Another idea Tucker proposed is keeping some deicing on hand for jets. He did a little research and learned an air pump sprayer could be purchased for around $200. He said a 2.5 gallon container of Kill Frost is about $67.75.
No one was sure how much of the deicing compound would be required for one plane. Tucker said he’d talk to some jet pilots to get more information.
Kinzie asked if the airport would have any liability if a plane wasn’t thoroughly deiced before taking off. Logsdon said the pilot “has the last say” on when to take off, so the airport shouldn’t be liable.
Kinzie said maybe the airport should get a pump and have a couple of gallons on hand to see how it goes. Parker said he thought it was a good idea.
Tucker reported the lighted windsock installation had to be shipped off for repairs. The wires got twisted up in the storms and it went out. The company indicated they would send a whole new system with the airport just paying the shipping charge. The free windsock from the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission was sent along with the equipment. The company suspected it might be too heavy for the system. Logsdon commented, “Every time we upgrade, it costs more to maintain.”
Tucker said he’s still trying to figure out what needs to be checked when at the airport. He said the Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC) inspector stopped by Monday. There was a lightning strike and the cathodic protection had to be fixed. When it’s repaired the OCC will do an inspection. That system is checked every three years but the time period will be reset after a repair.
The airport checks fuel levels every day and reports them to the OCC. However, Tucker said he didn’t realize a leak detection test on the fuel system must be done every year. The airport was a little overdue on that report. He has called an Enid company that does the inspection. This inspection is only for the 100LL. The Jet A tank is double-wall fiberglass and does not need the annual leak detection rest.
Kinzie asked Tucker if he is developing some kind of master calendar to track when inspections are due. Tucker said he’s putting a book together.
The commission members voted to table the acceptance of the Garver Engineering report for an upcoming project. They also decided to table the acceptance of the 2020 five-year capital improvement plan. They’ll address these two items at a later meeting.