Kenai airport lands FAA grant

Posted: Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Kenai Municipal Airport safety is expected to get a $3.6 million boost if the city council approves a revenue and appropriations increase at tonight’s council meeting.

The appropriation ordinance has been on the council’s three previous business agendas, but city administration asked that it be postponed pending notification that a $3,541,997 Federal Aviation Administration grant was released by Congress.

“The FAA grant offer came through,” said City Manager Rick Koch on Tuesday.

The money is to be used for main runway improvements including new runway lighting, repaving the runway, paving the runway shoulders and extending the safety zone at the south end of the runway by 200 feet.

In addition to the federal grant, $93,211 is coming from the state and $15,114 is being transferred from Kenai’s airport fund to the capital project fund.

Last year, the airport’s taxiway was lengthened to the full length of the main runway and work began to lengthen the airport’s float plane basin. In all, the airport capital improvements are projected to cost $12.6 million.

The council also is slated to consider a $30,000 expenditure for lighting and security improvements at the ConocoPhillips/City of Kenai Multipurpose Facility.

“This came out of budget discussions,” Koch said. “It’s partly in response to vandalism and partly to people in there skating at night.”

He said the existing lights, which are coin-operated, require a high energy demand when first turned on. His recommendation is to install lights that can stay on all night at reduced cost.

To enhance security, only two entrances would be available at night, and each would be monitored with a security camera.

If approved by the city council, funding for the improvements would be transferred from the legislative advertising budget.

In other business, the council is to be asked for permission to begin charging out-of-state users of the Kenai Municipal Library a $25 registration fee good for two years. The fee was approved by the Library Commission.

Koch said he plans to recommend making the fee annual rather than every two years.

The council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Phil Hermanek can be reached at

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