Members of Johnson County Airport Commission are given a presentation about a potential pond restoration project at New Century Airfield on Dec. 7, 2016. Photo courtesy of Rick Poppitz

Rick Poppitz
Special to The Gardner News
The Johnson County Airport Commission met an hour earlier than usual on Dec. 7, as they expected a heavy agenda, including a final review of the 2015 audit. The early start time turned out to be unnecessary however, because the audit was not yet complete and not on the agenda.
Audit incomplete
At the previous JCAC meeting on Oct. 26, county auditors presented information from an incomplete audit of fiscal year 2015. The auditors said then that they hoped to complete the audit and present a final summary at today’s Dec. 7 meeting.
Brad Weisenburger, chairman, explained at the start of the meeting that the audit was not on the agenda because it had not yet been completed.
Penny Postoak-Ferguson, deputy county manager at Johnson County, and Aaron Otto, interim airport executive director, will meet with the auditors when the audit is complete. The audit will be presented at the subsequent commission meeting.
Postoak-Ferguson said the final report would be completed in January or February.
“It’s moving along and the information is being analyzed,” said Weisenburger.
Pond restoration
The commission heard a detailed presentation on a possible pond restoration project at New Century Airfield.
According to a presentation slide, the actual restoration work was expected to cost $856,500.
Engineering and survey costs would add $157,848.
The slide included a 20 percent contingency of $171,300, which would make the total $1.18 million.
Among the contingencies is possible need for removal of contamints. Sediment tests have indicated a presence of lead.
In the past, gun ranges were in the area and that is speculated to be the origin of the lead.
Staff will make inquiries with the US Army Corps of Engineers, state storm water management programs, and seek other possible sources of funding or assistance for this project.
New cold storage facility
The commission approved a “Lease Option” agreement with Lineage Logistics, LLC, for property directly west of the Unilever facility. Lineage Logistics will pay a $9,060 “Option Fee” that gives them access to the property for a six month term beginning Jan. 1, 2017.
JCAC will not seek or consider any other sales or lease proposals during the term.
A written lease agreement is to be negotiated, agreed upon and executed at or before the end of the lease option on June 30.
Should the parties be unable to agree on a lease arrangement, neither has any further obligations. JCAC would retain the option fee.
If agreement is reached, a new 250-400,000 sq. ft. cold storage food distribution facility will be built on that site.
The basement problem at One New Century
The problem of moisture/mold in the basement was a topic of discussion at the Oct. 26 meeting. At that meeting, commission members were presented with an estimate for repair costs.
The committee did not approve the expenditure. Instead, they directed staff to “get creative” and come up with less costly alternatives to consider.
Today’s recommendation included three individual items.
One item that was not part of the October recommendation focused on diverting as much surface water as possible by improving the storm water drainage systems around the building.
Photos of the inside of the primary underground drainage pipe were shown. It is visibly damaged and needs repair.
Three new storm water boxes would also be installed for more drainage.
The drainage plan also includes site grading, including landscaping, around the entire building.
Cost for the drainage improvements is estimated $176,033
The original electrical panel in the basement is outdated. Otto said it appears the panel dates back to 1942.
Building codes would require the panel be updated should it ever fail and need repair beyond normal maintenance.
The panel replacement cost is $55,700.
The other recommendation was to purchase and permanently install five commercial grade humidifiers at a cost of $114,000. There are temporary rental humidifiers operating at present.
Foundation repairs were also recommended for $15,000.
The commission decided to move forward with the storm drainage improvements and hold off on the other recommendations.
After the drainage improvements are completed and the effectiveness evaluated, the commission will again consider the other recommended improvements.
Staff reorganization
Penny Postoak-Ferguson, deputy county manager at Johnson County, gave an update on the executive director search. The field of applicants has been narrowed down to 11. In person interviews are tentatively set for January 5.
Otto gave a review of staff reorganization. He told the commission that JCAC has filled the chief financial officer (CFO) position.
Kevin Hiskey, who has been serving as interim finance officer for the last four months, has been selected and has accepted the full time position.
Hiskey has decades of experience as a CPA and has previously served as deputy director of Treasury and Financial Management for Johnson County.
The CFO and the deputy director are the two senior leadership positions under the executive director.
The deputy director (Larry Peet) is responsible day to day air, rail and facilities operations, while the CFO will be focused on leases, budgets, document processing, etc.
Otto said the CFO would assume a lead role in the audit response.
Two supervisor positions are also in the process of being filled. Postings for those positions close on December 8. Interviews will be conducted in early 2017.
A fee for services agreement with Olathe Fire District was approved for the executive airport at 151st and Pflumm.  OFD will provide twice a day runway checks on weekends and holidays (as possible) and conduct annual fire inspections on 127 hangars.
The commission approved an amendment to the lease with Commemorative Air Force.
The commission approved contracts with McConnell & Associates and McAnany Construction for on call asphalt and concrete work. This is intended to speed up the process when emergency repairs are needed.