City approves funds for airport improvements

By Steve Hansen
Correspondent

Tucumcari’s airport received a little more than $500,000 in attention from the City Commission on Thursday that will renovate a parking lot, install a generator and, if another grant comes through, take care of some regular maintenance.

The money for the improvements comes mostly from the Federal Aviation Commission and New Mexico Department of Transportation’s Aviation Division.

The commission also:

• Approved a contract for design and project management services for a new cell for waste disposal at the city’s solid-waste landfill.

Gordon Environmental, Inc., a Bernalillo-based engineering firm, received the $79,900 for the landfill project’s planning.

• Completed first reading of an ordinance that would allot $80,320 in Local Economic Development Act funds to help launch 3D Tools, a business based on Tucumcari resident Glen Lubera’s invention of a labor-saving snow shovel.

The ordinance now faces a public hearing and second reading for final approval.

Lubera would launch the business in 8,500 square feet of a city-owned warehouse at 815. E. Whitmore Ave, City Manager Jared Langenegger said. The business would create two to four jobs.

• Awarded a contract of almost $380,000 for parking lot construction on the airport’s south side to R.L. Leader, a Santa Fe-based construction firm.

The construction includes paving and sealing, and replacement of an electronic gate to the airport’s hangar area, according to Jim Sewell, airport manager.

• Awarded a contract of $52,400 to WH Pacific, an engineering firm to perform design and engineering services for the airport parking lot.

• Awarded a $63,000 contract to Norris and Sons Electric Co. of Clovis for purchase and installation of a generator at the airport.

Sewell said the generator operates airport landing lights in case of a power outage.

• Gave Sewell the go-ahead to apply for a grant of about $11,000 in state transportation department funds that would buy supplies like wind socks, landing lights and even lawn mower blades for airport maintenance.

Also at the meeting, Langenegger said the city must start constructing a new cell at its landfill, because the current cell may be filled to capacity as early as March 2017.

Under questioning from District 1 Commissioner Ralph Moya, Langenegger said the new cell will require about 2 1/2 acres. The current cell, he said, took more than two years to fill up, which is standard.

The landfill is accommodating trash from Logan, Santa Rosa and San Jon, Langenegger said.

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