Members approve 10% Airport charges increase
Members approved a recommendation to increase commercial fees and charges at the Airport by 10% at Tuesday's (March 5th) Full Council meeting.
The recommendation from Craig Dryden, Senior Manager for Infrastructure & Planning, concerned the Passenger Load Supplement and fees relating to landing and freight for 2019/20.
Members were also asked to apply an incentive scheme whereby a discount of 7% is triggered once 97,000 passenger journeys have been recorded at St Mary’s Airport.
Cllr Avril Mumford proposed an alternative charges increase of 5%, saying that she feared a 10% rise would have a knock-on effect and the cost of flights would go up. She also suggested scrapping the incentive scheme. She was supported in her proposal by Cllr Jonathan Smith.
However, the other six Members present voted for the recommended 10% rise due to the "fragile" financial position of the airport due in part to declining passenger numbers.
They also voted in favour of Cllr Fran Grottick's suggestion of lowering the passenger journey requirement for the discount to 95,000 "in the spirit of recognising that [a 10% rise] is going to be a stress factor for the sole operator".
An additional recommendation was approved that a report on the viability and capital costs of the airport be brought back to Full Council as soon as possible and within six months.
Watch the discussion on airport fees and charges below: