Members of the Oscoda-Wurtsmith Airport Authority met on Thursday, July 15, to handle business.

OSCODA – The Oscoda-Wurtsmith Airport Authority (OWAA) met, primarily in person, with some members on Zoom, on Thursday, July 15, and discussed the five-year-plan in the Airport Capital Improvement Program (ACIP). 

With Oscoda-Wurtsmith Airport (OWA) Manager Gary Kellan’s departure, in September, or the end of the year depending on the ability to find a new director, he wanted to review all the projects lined up for 2022-26 with the board. 

“In order to remain eligible for grant funding from the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and MDOT (Michigan Department of Transportation) Aeronautics, airports are required to maintain a current Capital Improvement Plan that forecasts at least five years of projects,” said Kellan. “With assistance from our engineering firm we update that annually.” 

He began with projects in 2022, citing that there’s a reoccurring issue with the hangars. 

“The hangar doors have been a problem for us, so with assistance from our engineering firm we put together a plan for rehabilitating this and they’ve provided us with a cost,” said Kellan. 

According to Kellan, the cost of the project could cost as much as $7 million dollars. With that in mind, he was encouraged to find grant funding. Staff has submitted an application seeking to compete for FAA – Military Airport Program funding for rehabilitating 12 aircraft hangars. 

“It’s specific to airfields that formerly were used by military operations as the name suggests,” said Kellan. “Unfortunately, a majority of that money is being allocated for airports that support commercial passenger service. On a national level, unfortunately, they are only allowing one general aviation airfield to go into that program.” 

Kellan said he expects the project to take four years and cost $6.4 million dollars. 

“If this were to get funded, our five percent local match would be $353,562,” said Kellan. 

He told members of the authority to just keep that number in mind. 

The remaining list of projects Kellan presented to the board pertained to pavement including rehabilitating Taxiway East General Aviation Hangar Access – Phase 1 Design to be completed in 2022 as well. 

“It’s in pretty bad shape what’s basically happened is a lot of blacktop patching, but the concrete is at the point now where it’s deteriorating,” said Munson. 

Other projects by year included: 

• 2023 – construct/modify/improve/rehab hangar-MAP Hangar Rehab & Modifications construction (four year project previously mentioned), Rehabilitate Taxiway E Phase 1 construction continued 

• 2024 – Rehabilitate Taxiway A (Phase 1) Design 

• 2025 – Rehabilitate Taxiway A (Phase 1) Construction

• 2026 – Rehabilitate Taxiway A (Phase 2) and B-Construction, Rehabilitate Taxiway A (Phase 3) and C-Construction, Rehabilitate Taxiway A (Phase 2) and B-Design, Rehabilitate Taxiway A (Phase 3) and C-Design, Reconstruct Taxiway Lighting-A through D-Construction and Design, Rehabilitate Taxiway E (Phase 2) Design and Construction and Rehabilitate Taxiway E GA Hangar Access (Phase 2) Design and Construction 

“We’re breaking this down into multi-year projects. We’ve done that in the past and sometimes the state has come in and said, ‘Listen you get more efficiencies combining or doing projects at one time’,” said Kellan. “They may come back to us and say ‘Let’s try to fit this altogether in one project.” 

A motion to approve the ACIP as presented was made by OWAA Representative Mike Munson and was seconded by OWAA Representative Dave Dailey receiving a 7-0 vote. 

Other business included: 

• Approval of the financial activities report with payment transactions totaling $8194,288.18. According to Kellan, there was a one time payment to Streng Construction, in the amount of $95,700 for installing a roof covering over Cell No. 4 of building 60. General operating expenses were approximately $98,588.18. A motion to approve the report was made by Munson and was seconded by OWAA Representative Ann Richards receiving a 7-0 vote. 

• Authorization to extend the professional services contract with Anderson, Tackman & Co. for one year with a fee of $4,200. A motion was made by Munson and was seconded by OWAA Representative Kevin Beliveau receiving a 7-0 vote.

• North American Space Summit (NASS) Attendance/Participation – authorization to share and pay half of the exhibitor booth fee with the Charter Township of Oscoda ($2,000 each). Additionally a motion was made for individuals to attend (Kellan and two board members) to pay $1,400 per person.  Both motions were made by Beliveau and were seconded by Dailey and received a 7-0 vote. 

• Airport Director Recruiting Service Proposal – As reported, Chairman Boyat, Beliveau and Munson agreed to served as a committee for soliciting applicants seeking to serve as the Director of OWAA. To help with this, the staff sought out a consulting firm, GovHR USA. GovHR USA provided the board with a service proposal including full scope or limited scope recruitment, with a different of $3,000. A motion to agree to the full scope recruitment for $22,000, not to exceed $25,000 was made by Dailey and was seconded by Beliveau receiving a 7-0 vote. 

• Discussion about cost per person for the Michigan Association of Airport Executives (MAAE) in September. A motion to allow Kellan, Jack Brown and Munson to attend was made by Munson and was seconded by Beliveau receiving a 7-0 vote. 

• Reschedule of September meeting due to MAAE. The meeting will now be held on Thursday, Sept. 30 at 10 a.m.

• Taxiways Crack Sealing and Paint Markings – At the June meeting, as reported, the board adopted Resolution 2021-04 to authorize Kellan to sign the proposed grant agreement. According to Kellan, they have not yet scheduled a date. 

• NORAD – NORTHCOM Military Exercise – during the meeting the exercise was in process, but according to Kellan it fizzled out, resulting in the attendance of only on KC-135 and no B52 or B1 Bombers.  

• Michigan Launch Initiative –   No updates, just encouragement from Gavin Brown to attend NAAS. No information about the application progress. 

• Fixed Based Operations Cell 9 Hangar Door Rehabilitation – work is complete.

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