City approves airport capital improvement plan

During their final meeting of 2016, held on Tuesday, the Fort Scott City Commission received and approved an Airport Federal Improvement Program for the Fort Scott Municipal Airport as presented by airport manager Kenny Howard.


The document includes a five-year capital improvement plan, beginning in 2018, but also looks at some long-range goals reaching all the way through 2027, listing the costs associated with those projects. The plan will be submitted to the Federal Aviation Administration and will be completed based on the federal dollars available, which is provided at a 90/10 percent split, with the city providing 10 percent of the cost.

Some of the initial projects include replacing the runway and taxiway edge lighting systems—some of which Howard said have been there since the 1970s, purchasing more land to the south of the current runway and then completing surveys to prepare for extending the runway. Long-term goals include runway and edge lighting extensions, construction of a partial parallel taxiway and the upgrade of other systems.

The costs of the projects range from $90,000 to more than $3 million. No projects are planned for 2019 in order to build up funding for future, larger projects that cannot be complete at one time.

The city owns 25 acres used for the airport, but would like to eventually buy about 75 more acres. The airport has more than 20 planes, which are used regularly by local businesses and manufacturers, and also houses a new crop-dusting firm that built a hangar.

“The airport is kind of out of sight, out of mind, how much business we do out there,” City Manager Dave Martin said, pointing out that its presence and efficiency are key to further development in Fort Scott.

  • The city also gave Police Chief Travis Shelton permission to go out to bid for four new police vehicles. With that purchase, older vehicles will be replaced while two current vehicles will be transferred to the codes department.
  • The commission also approved a four-year lease for 30 new golf carts for the Woodland Hills Golf Course, which will cost almost $19,500 each year. The city will receive more than $14,000 from the company by trading in 16 of the golf course’s current golf carts.

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