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Flying club hopes to sell fuel at airport

Project part of plan to fully revitalize the facility
Houston Flying Club volunteers continue to renovate and improve the main building at the District of Houston-owned Houston airport. (Contributed photo)

The District of Houston is backing the move by the Houston Flying Club to fully establish the Houston airport as a going concern.

This time it is providing a letter of support for the club’s application through the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako for a provincial grant to cover the cost of setting up an automated fuel sales service.

Such a service would meet present demand and create additional incentive for locals and others to use the facility, flying club secretary treasurer Sue Jones outlined in a letter provided to council when it met May 7.

The club has already ordered a fuel tank using $25,500 from an initial grant but is now seeking the money needed for a metered fuel delivery system and a system whereby credit cards can be used to make payment.

In all, it is applying to the provincial government for $85,000 through the Bulkley-Nechako regional district for the purchase of the two systems, shipping and sales tax.

A successful grant application would restore fuel sales service that existed at the airport until the 1990s.

The airport is also to be the beneficiary of nearly 6,000 feet of eight-foot high fencing, something Jones said is needed to keep humans as well as bears and other large animals off of the runway surface.

The fencing is coming from TC Energy along with $1,200 towards installation costs.

“As aviation is increasing and the demand for pilots is ramping up, the call for ground and flight training is frequent,” Jones added.

“Currently the Houston Flying Club has a partnership application with the Vanderhoof Flying Club to obtain a satellite flight training location [at the airport]. Fuel is a necessary requirement for flight school operations.”

At first the club thought it might have an honour system or having a volunteer on hand to sell fuel but that’s now changed.

“We realize that we need to have the whole project in place for peace of mind of secured payments and safety,” Jones said of point of sale electronic payment system.

In the meantime, club members continue their volunteer work on renovating the main building at the airport.

And tree clearing adjacent to the runway to better provide sight lines for pilots will resume once the spring weather fully arrives.

About the Author: Rod Link

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