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Quincy, California
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June 23, 2010     Feather River Bulletin
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Page 3 Plumas County Grand Jury Report 3. Nervino Airport Runway length: 4.625 with 6,000 feet possible Future Airport Improvement Plans by year • 2010-New Snow Plow Vehicle • 2010-Engineering Design • 2010--startup of the US Forest Service Air Attack Base/multi-agency fire center • 2011--Reseal pavement joints and paint airfield markings • 2012--Tee hangar site development • 2013-- Environment assessment study • 2014--Engineering Design • 2015--Replace 4 unit tee hangar building, plus • 2016--Construct two 5 unit nested tee hangars, plus • 2017--Jet fuel tank dispenser Increasingly, Nervino Airport is becoming a more important center with the traffic overflow from Stead Air Base in Reno. It is also the site of the coun- ty's next U. S. Forest Service Air Attack Base. This development is facilitated by Plumas National Forest applying for and reeeiving $2.2 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. It will become a multi-agency fire center. This facility would allow federal, county and private emergency response services to serve Plumas County. The Director of Facility Ser.vices says that he projects the Air Attack Base would also include a helicopter attack base for the Forest Service and a possible CareFlight station. The airport would be annexed into Beckwourth Fire District, allowing surrounding areas to get faster emergency response times. The county will receive rent from the Forest Service ($25,000/year), Beckwourth Fire, and CareFlight. The Forest Service will pay for and construct their needed facilities with those capital improvements becoming county property in thirty years. This thir- ty year turnover is typical for all structures that are built on any airport properties-by private parties. Department of Transportation Airport Inspection In June of 2009, the Department of Transportation (DOT) made an inspection for state permit compli- ance of our three airfields. Previous inspection let- ters and the most recent State Airport Permit were used for this evaluation. The corrections noted by the DOT reports, for all three airports: • Brush within the Runway Safety Area (60 feetside of centerline and 240 feet beyond each end of run- way) needs to be removed • Coniferous trees that penetrate the FAR Transitional Surface needs to be topped or removed • Lip of runway needs to be filled and compacted flush to grade • Runway needs to be displaced for local highway penetrating Federal Aviation Regulations Approach Surface Concerning specific issues at Gansner Field on the DOT inspectinn of Jun 18, 2009, two items of con: cern were noted: • A fire hydrant between parallel taxiways • An electrical box on a segment of asphalt between taxiways It was recommended that the fire hydrant either be relocated or marked with reflective tape and be given a low profile bawricade. The electrical box should Noting the resource.burden associated with some of these needs above, the DOT remarked at the end of the inspection report, "The Department will contin- ue to offer both financial and technical assistance to Plumas County." Monies planned for these compli- ance issues were not provided because of our State's own budget woes. An agreement stands between both state and county that the issues not resolved may be done at a later date. Rogers Field had similar small tasks to correct that included cutting down trees along the airport's perimeter. Nervino had tall brush and weeds to cut down and an old truck to remove. Finances Total expenditures for 2008-2009:$358,674 Total revenues for 2008-2009:$373,070 * • Rents and concessions: $103,117 • Sale of fuel: $225,705 • State aid for aviation: $30,000 • Fuel Facility-other: $7,286 • Landing Fees: $5,940 • Interest-Investment funds: $693 • Reimbursements: $328.00 • Pumping fees of $8,291 come out of these revenues. Ten thousand dollars a year is paid on a loan that was taken out in 2006. This loan has been repaid. Additional funding is available through the FAA for specific improvement programs. The DOT inspects air- port grounds once a year and provides major mainte- nance (e.g. resurfacing) through Ca/ Trans. This is funded by the FAA through their Airport Improvement Program. Plumas County employs an airport consul- tant to obtain FAA grants and oversee project designs. Mid Year Budget Report Revenues for this part of the year 2009-2010 are down by 23%. However the airports are currently running in the black by $7783. The shortage in revenue is part- ly due to the state freezing the California Aid to Aviation Program, in the amount of $30,000. Revenues were further diminished by the expected loss of fuel sales and the reduced rent when a lessee defaulted on last fiscal year's lease. This property has since been leased to the Chester Fire Department in exchange for fire service. This default can result in loss of revenues in the amount of $18,000. Cautious optimism prevails for this next fiscal year. The state program for avia- tion is possibly going to be released on July 1, 2010. Additionally, this fiscal year, a loan to the state for the Roger's field fuel farm has been repaid. This will allow a little more breathing room in the coming year. Other All three airports are in compliance with FAA regu- lations. Procedures To ascertain the leadership and general operation of our airports the Grand Jury gained information from the following sources: Interviews • Director of Facility Services • Rogers Field airport manager • Nervino Airport manager also be given reflective tape and have a yellow "X" on the asphalt, at the side of the taxiway. Action on these two non-critical issues has yet to be taken, but is planned. Airports Toured • Gansner Field • Rogers Field • Nervino Airport Documents reviewed • Supplier contracts: Branding and fuel from Exxon Mobile • Manager contracts • Land lease conVacts • Plumas County 2008-2009 budget • 2008-2009 Airport budget • Airport mid-year (2009-2010) budget report to Chief Administrative Officer and Board of Supervisors • DOT/FAA permit compliance reports • Airport capital improvement program (projected i costs 2010-2024) Economic Development in Plumas County Specific Issue: Plumas County is a wonderful place to live because of its surrounding forests, its many stunning lakes, abundant clean water, and pristine air quality. It is such a wonderful place that we want to preserve its natural beauty for our enjoyment and that of the many visitors who come here every year. At the same time, we realize that we must have a healthy econ0- my. Our country is suffering through an unusually deep and long lasting recession, and Plumas County is certainly feeling the impact of America's strug- gling economy. County revenues are down, our tourism industry is struggling to maintain momen- tum, our schools are experiencing declining enroll- ments, and recent layoffs at local mills and in the timber industry have contributed to increased unem- ployment in the county. Because the state of the economy is on everyone's minds these days, the Grand Jury decided that it was time to look into what the county has done in the past and can do in the future to improve and diversify the economy in Plumas County. For purposes of the investigation, the Grand Jury defined economic development as sustaining a viable economy that benefits the whole of the citizens of Plumas County to include: • Employing an economic development program that emphasizes continued support of our current businesses and our local tourism industry • Striving to create a diversified economic base by attracting a variety of new businesses to our area which are compatible with our desire to preserve the rural environment and natural beauty of Plumas County • Maintaining the moderate economic growth nec- essary to sustain a balanced community made up of young people, a viable workforce, and retirees. Summary of the Investigation: The Grand Jury investigated Plumas County and the City of Portola (the only incorporated city in the county) to assess the effectiveness of their actions to promote a healthy economy. While the city uses its staff for its economic development programs, the county relies solely upon local non-profit agencies: Plumas Corporation, the Plumas .County Visitors Bureau, and the Chambers of Commerce: Chester/Lake Almanor, Eastern Plumas, Indian Valley, and Quincy. The Grand Jury also investigated these _gencies to ornflr, r* *h-χ they rC .......... j spending funding provided by the county. Both the city and county have economic development plans in place; however, the Grand Jury discovered that nei- ther has adequately funded nor fully carried out