Tompkins County
New York

Report or Discussion Item

Departmental Update


Category:Routine Departmental Activities or StatisticsFunctions:Airport


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Meeting History

Nov 14, 2017 3:00 PM  Facilities and Infrastructure Committee Regular Meeting

Mr. Hall said the Airport is now all jet service and spoke of the improvements made and reliability with the airlines being much better.

Mr. Hall said that the Part 139 records and airfield inspection was conducted and for the second year in a row only one minor write-up was reported.

Mr. Hall provided a status report on the proposed terminal expansion project and the requirement for three jet bridges. A representative from the Governor’s office came to the Airport last Friday to discuss the needs at the Airport. At the advisement of the Department of Transportation, the focus of the meeting was on the inside of the Airport and fencing area. However, he said the Airport stands ready with its 15-acre plot to incorporate DOT, TCAT, and others to have a combined air-ground terminal area. There would also be room for more parking and an opportunity for solar power.

Mr. Hall said the proposed cost for the terminal updates and expansion projects is $14.2 million. He explained some of the necessary improvements and said if the Governor’s funding does not become available, he would recommend “Plan B” that would cost approximately $8-$9 million and would only include improvements to the terminal. If this scenario is pursued, he will come back to the Committee with a recommendation.

He spoke of the Federal government and said that they prefer to fund terminal improvements that relate to safety features. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) expects an Airport to use Passenger Facility Charges (PFCs) for terminal upgrades and to pay off any debt. He noted that it has been years since the PFCs have been raised; however, there is some movement in increasing that charge in the future that could affect the Airport’s project. He said there is a need to begin the terminal improvements next spring.

Mr. Hall further commented that it was suggested to the Governor’s representative that if grant funds are received, a ribbon cutting could take place on September 22, 2018, which is the date the plane “Tommy” is going to fly. There will be an open house and a celebration of 100 years for aviation in the community.

He spoke of a Small Cities Development Airport grant application that is due in December and is looking for letters of commitment and support. He further spoke of the interest in looking at having a new service to Chicago and said it would benefit and serve this community well.

In response to Mr. McKenna’s question about the Governor’s representative having any interest in a customs facility; Mr. Hall said that it is not an easy connection to make in this area and what is offered such as the wineries is a deterrent because of the density and weight of wine. He said connecting it with those who travel anywhere around the world and creating a global community would be in the Airport’s best interest as this is what makes this area unique. He spoke briefly about an award he believes the Airport will receive for a program called “China Welcome”. The intent of the program is to help tourism in the area and help global travelers who come here for various reasons.

Mr. Sigler was excused at this time.