Changes Ahead?

Changes Ahead?

By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski

Fee hikes eyed at Scottsdale Airport

Scottsdale Airport is proposing increased rates and fees after staff at the city-owned airport found its current rates and fees fell below market averages.

“The Scottsdale Aviation Department reviews its rates and fees annually to determine if any changes are necessary to cover costs associated with operating the airport,” says Sarah Ferrara, Aviation Planning and Outreach coordinator.

The airport is proposing increases to fees on fuel, fuel storage, overnight aircraft parking and rental cars and the hourly rate charged to customers who have work performed by airport staff.

The airport is proposing increasing its fuel flowage fee from 8 cents per gallon to 11 cents.

According to the airport, a recent market analysis of 18 Arizona airports found that Scottsdale’s current rate, in place since 2002, was well below the 11-cent average fuel flowage fee.

Scottsdale Airport was tied with Buckeye Municipal Airport with the lowest fuel flowage fee on the list.

Yuma International Airport had the highest rate on the list 22 cents per gallon.

Scottsdale Airport is also proposing doubling its fuel storage facility fee from 25 cents per gallon to 50 cents.

Scottsdale Aviation also found that some of its aircraft parking fees were below market rate when compared to area airports.

Scottsdale charges overnight parking fees of $5 per night for single-engine aircraft and $15 for twin-engine aircraft. The airport also charges $75 for jets.

A market analysis found that the average charged overnight parking fees charged at 11 U.S. airports was $9.60 for single-engine, $15 for twin-engine and $89.13 for jets.

Scottsdale Aviation is proposing increasing its fee to $50 for single and twin-engine turboprops and $110 for jets.

Scottsdale Airport is also proposing increasing its nightly parking fee from $4 to $5 for single-rotor helicopters under 12,500 pounds and from $8 to $10 for single-rotor helicopters over 12,500 pounds.

The airport is proposing increasing the parking fee for twin-rotor helicopters from $12 to $15 per night.

Scottsdale Aviation is also proposing an increased fee on rental car operators that work with fixed-base operators at the airport.

The airport is proposing increasing the monthly fee from 8 to 10% of the rental car operator’s gross income from sale of services.

A market analysis of several similar airports found that most charged a 10% fee, though Falcon Field in Mesa charges a 5% fee. Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport in Mesa charges a flat daily fee of $2.50 per transaction.

According to Scottsdale Aviation, revenue collected from the airport’s rates and fees covers service costs, debt service and future capital costs.

Scottsdale Aviation is an enterprise fund, meaning it operates self-sufficiently without allocations from the city’s general fund.

Ferrara said the airport estimated it could bring in an additional $400,000 in revenue if all proposed rates and fees are approved.

Scottsdale Aviation hosted a public open house on the proposed rate and fee increases on November 21 in the Thunderbird/Stearman meeting room, located in the Aviation Business Center at 15000 N. Airport Drive.

The Scottsdale City Council will decide whether or not to approve the proposed increases at a meeting in May. ν