The Lead Finance Officer presented the above report, a copy of which had previously been circulated. He advised that the purpose of the report was to provide Members with an update in relation to the current funding position for City of Derry Airport and endorse funding from the North West Air Access Consortium for promotion of new and existing routes.
Councillor P Kelly commended Officers on securing the new tender and routes at City of Derry Airport. He enquired as to the current position in regards to securing funding from other Councils within the region towards the Airport.
The Chief Executive stated that this had been alluded to in a report submitted to the July Meeting of the Committee on the short-term and long-term issues regarding City of Derry Airport. He said this involved a business case which was currently being drafted to consider other sources of funding for the Airport and how these could be progressed. Any sources identified would have to be worked through to ensure sustainability for the Airport.
In response to a query from Councillor P Kelly, the Chief Executive advised that the inclusion of Donegal County Council was not being considered at this stage.
Councillor Tierney thanked and congratulated Officers for their hard work and efforts in securing a new operator for the Derry – Stanstead route and the additional Manchester route. He said it was essential that other sources for the Airport were identified as this would ultimately reduce the burden on ratepayers. He continued that the success of the Airport would depend on usage and welcomed the money being invested in marketing in this regard.
Subsequently, the Committee
Recommended (a) that Members endorse the steps taken to secure the emergency Public Service Organisation (PSO) contract and to authorise officers to engage with DFE and DFT in relation to the medium term tender process; and
(b) that approval be granted for funding of £105k from the North West Air Access Consortium for promotion of new and existing routes at the airport.