Landing fees planned to cover airport costs
A decision to spend an estimated $ 274,000 resealing the Tokoroa Airport has prompted the South Waikato District Council to impose landing fees.
The council was faced with a a decision to sell or gift the airport or re-seal it.
The seal is expected to last 50 years and is planned to take place in the 2016-17 financial year.
Hob’bs – chief executive Craig
Its future appears to be secure with plans to implement landing fees.
‘‘The main issue is that there is no landing fee associated with aircraft using the facility, and therefore at the present time we generate no revenue from aircraft use,’’ chief executive Craig Hobbs said.
Strategic planning manager Sarah Flavell said the investment should prompt more enforcement on the management.
‘‘The operational side of it needs to be resolved, who is running it and what department . . . we don’t want a management plan that sits pretty on the shelf,’’ she said.
Hobbs said it is unusual for an airport not to have landing fees and investigations will take place on how it can be managed. An annual fee for regular users and a casual fee were likely.
Mayor Neil Sinclair said the rules needed to be followed as well.
The council was troubled with model aircraft users last year.
A ban came after council assets group manager Roger Fisher sent a letter to the club informing it its members were banned from using the Tokoroa Airport after receiving reports from Model Flying NZ and the Civil Aviation Authority that indicate ‘‘ blatant misuse of the airport’’.
And club member Bruce Simpson disputed the claim as he believed it had not gone under proper investigation.
With the new reseal planned, Sinclair said the council ‘‘couldn’t afford’’ to put up with ‘‘ silly nonsense’’.
‘‘ We’re providing a facility, this is what we’re doing, you obey the rules.’’