WILMINGTON — The Clinton County Port Authority Board discussed during its April meeting the continuing need to address infrastructure at the Wilmington Air Park.
To that end, it reviewed and approved an application to the Ohio Department of Transportation, Office of Aviation for projects estimated to total nearly $900,000.
“We have been very fortunate to receive grant funds from ODOT Aviation for several projects at the Wilmington Air Park,” said Clinton County Port Authority Executive Director Daniel Evers. “This annual competitive grant program application is a collaborative effort of the Port Authority staff, LGSTX Services staff and Michael Baker International staff. The CCPA, over the past five years, has secured over $750,000 in grant funds through this particular program.”
More specifically, the projects proposed for the FY 2022 grant cycle would address milling and replacing asphalt in the overrun area of Runway 22R, concrete panel repair and replacement on Taxiways C and D, and earthwork around the navigational aids to preserve their life at the airport.
“These funds, if awarded, would be available in 2022, and would require, as our application is proposed, a match of 21 percent from the Port Authority for each project,” added Evers. “Nearly all the airports in Ohio are eligible to apply for these funds, so the competition is significant.”
The Port Authority Board also reviewed and approved a proposal from CORSA (County Risk Sharing Authority) to provide property and liability insurance to the Port Authority for the coming year. In sharing information with the Board, Evers said that this is the second year of a three-year agreement to work with CORSA for this insurance.
At its annual meeting, CORSA indicated that members might see a 1.45 percent increase for this insurance year. At $1,710 more than last year, the increase for the Port Authority is just under 0.9 percent. Bickel Insurance is the local provider for the CORSA insurance outlet to the Port Authority.
“CORSA shops in the reinsurance market annually to ensure that we are receiving appropriate coverage,” said Evers. “Additionally, CORSA offers options for staff to impact its costs by offering workshops and webinars – which we continue to attend, to learn about best practices and contain costs.”
Before starting with staff reports, Evers expressed his appreciation to the LGSTX Services staff for a recent sewer line repair. “It was a focus around the clock for three days, and their response was borderline miraculous,” he stated.
The repair involved deploying equipment and personnel to mitigate a sewer line break that occurred over a recent weekend. LGSTX team members began, at the first of the week, to locate the source of the break, excavate through 18-inch-plus concrete to access it, repair the break, and repair the concrete, all without negatively impacting tenant operations, in less than one day.
In other business, board members discussed the options and process to move toward in-person meetings later in the year. All agreed that it would be a process to explore, understanding it would evolve over the next few months as more guidance is shared by the state.
The board was introduced to James Buckner, the new representative to Clinton County from the Ohio Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Miami Regionals who is hosted at the Port Authority offices. He replaces Sangmi Kim, who was the representative for the past eight months.
Buckner, in conjunction with Port Authority staff and the Wilmington Clinton County Chamber of Commerce will present two webinars in late April and mid-May.
Jennifer Klus Ekey, CCPA Economic Development Director, reported that the SBDC has continued to engage local businesses and has connected several businesses with each other, to the companies’ mutual benefit.
Staff reports focused on website updates, responses submitted for potential new development projects through JobsOhio and independently-sourced leads, participation in the next wave of JobsOhio’s Site Authentication program, workforce development activity – including two upcoming virtual career fairs – partner meetings, Air Park tenant activity, professional development, and hosting recent visitors to the Air Park, among other things.
The Clinton County Port Authority Board meets monthly, on the second Thursday of each month at 9 a.m. Zoom webinar registration links are available on the Port Authority page of the county website at https://co.clinton.oh.us/departments/PortAuthority in advance of each meeting.