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Airport fuel sales significantly increase

PULASKI COUNTY, Mo. (Dec. 8, 2010) — Fuel sales are still continuing to climb at the Waynesville-St. Robert Municipal Airport, airport manager Chris Schrantz reported at the Joint Airport Board’s Wednesday meeting.

“This is the first year that we ever went over 2,000 gallons per month in hundred low-lead sales,” Schrantz reported. “This is before we ever even got Cape Air coming in here; this is just general aviation , single engine, twin-engine piston -driven propeller airplanes.”

Not only did fuel sales for that category exceed 2,000 gallons per month, they’ve done so three times this year, he said, and that trend is expected to significantly increase with the arrival of Cape Air, the local airport’s new commercial carrier to St. Louis.

“With the incoming airline that trend is going to about double,” Schrantz said.

Hangar rents are paid up, he said, but the total of airplane hangar renters is down to only three. That’s been made up by transient users who choose to park their planes under roofs, he said, to avoid possible weather damage at a rate of $12.50 per day.

“People are still very happy to pay that,” Schrantz said. “We put transient airplanes in hangars pretty frequently.”

The airport’s de-icing equipment is also ready for use this winter, he said.

Since the new Cape Air planes won’t be using jet fuel but rather the low-lead fuel for its turbo-prop planes, board members agreed to lease rather than purchase a fuel truck to serve that type of fuel.

“This should pay for itself with Cape Air coming in,” said Waynesville City Administrator Bruce Harrill. “This is a one-year agreement, and then we should look at possibly, if everything works we planned and we can see the actual fuel sales, we might look at purchasing a truck next year.”

Maintenance on the fuel truck, a 2001 model International, will be conducted by the leasing company

“It’s a win-win for all general aviation,” Schrantz said. “It’s a tried and true company and they back everything 100 percent.”

Board members also approved a $2 million Military Airport Program grant application that, if successful, would help pay for a larger community hangar and other construction projects including a fuel storage facility and pavement sealing intended to prevent foreign objects from entering plane engines or nicking a propeller.

“A lot of the things you see out there right now were due to our first MAP application, the T-hangars and a lot of the pavement work,” Harrill said. “We’re asking for a community hangar, a bigger hangar; we’ve got to have a bigger hangar to support Cape Air. Right now Cape Air is having problems finding hangar space for their airplanes because they were planning to keep two airplanes down here.”

Cape Air is currently using the military hangars, but that can’t continue long-term, Harrill said.

In other business:

  • Both the cities of Waynesville and St. Robert have vacancies on the airport board; candidates do not need to be pilots but need to have an interest in aviation. Harrill said it’s likely that when Kevin Hillman leaves his position at St. Robert city attorney that he’ll be appointed as that city’s representative to the board.
  • Schrantz reported that a large DC-9 airplane came to the airport, which is one of the largest that has arrived at the local airport, and brought members of the 4th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade directly to Fort Leonard Wood rather than the original plans to land in Springfield.
  • Board members noted that Cape Air has opened a ticketing facility in the downtown store of Route 66 Music in Waynesville for people who may not want to drive on post to buy airplane tickets.

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