Rock Springs/Sweetwater County Airport continues to watch shortfalls in revenue streams

Rock Springs/Sweetwater County Airport continues to watch shortfalls in revenue streams

Rock Springs/Sweetwater County Airport continues to watch shortfalls in revenue streamsSWEETWATER COUNTY – With such an uncertainty in the local economy, government agencies are watching budgets closely. One which has been very tight and has board members paying close attention is the Rock Springs/Sweetwater County Airport.

When the airport develops its annual budget, it goes by past revenue numbers and anticipated changes in the upcoming fiscal year.  This year, several unexpected changes in the revenue streams have created shortfalls in the anticipated numbers.

In May, the airport was looking at an $80,000 shortage due to decreasing revenue streams. One of the biggest ones was due to the drop in fuel prices.

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On Wednesday, airport accountant Brad Radakovich of Heyborne, Radakovich and Co., gave the board an update. He said while the fuel sales margins are great, the volume is way down. Airport Administrator Shannon Lucero said the board does have the option to renegotiate the fuel contract. She said they had not negotiated the contract for several years.

Board member Jerry Klein asked about the jets and how they are fueling up. He asked if they were filling up at the airport or doing it all in Denver. Lucero said they are fueling up at the Rock Springs/Sweetwater County Airport, and they are taking more than the Brasilia did.

The board then discussed what they should do. Board member Larry Leavitt asked if they should wait 30 days to see if the amount of fuel the jets are using will bring the numbers back up. Radakovich said if the board waited 30 days to see what the numbers are for jet use, it would be a cycle of 60 days that would give them a better idea of what the numbers might be. The board decided to wait until next meeting to see if they could get a better idea of how the jets will affect the numbers.

Radovich said another item that is not coming is as expected is the car rental fees. The board did not go into detail about these drops.

 

Other financial discussions

– The Airport staff reported to the board they have submitted its budget request to the city of Rock Springs for the upcoming fiscal year. They recently received an email from the county about when budget requests needed to be turned in and will send their request to the county very soon.

– The board also discussed a recent report on Wyoming airports in the Wyoming Business Report. Klein said the report shows Gillette has moved up to fourth in usage while Rock Springs has dropped to fifth.

One of the biggest changes in the report was Cheyenne, which is down riders by 59 percent from 2013. Airport engineer Chuck Kellerman said the Cheyenne Airport totally relies on Great Lakes, which has suffered severe drops. Great Lakes is down 79 percent. Kellerman said it was a good move by the Rock Springs/Sweetwater County Airport Board and staff when they decided to add different airlines several years ago. You can read the report at http://wyomingbusinessreport.com/small-wyo-airports-on-funding-chopping-block/