Development Officer Blames CAA For St Mary’s Airport Overspend

airport may 2015The Council will know by July whether it has to borrow £582,000 to cover the overspend on the St Mary’s Airport project.

The shortfall has increased again – it’s now £32,000 more than reported to Full Council just last month.

Councillors at yesterday’s Policy and Resources Committee were told by Senior Strategic Development Manager, Diana Mompoloki, that there’s no money left in the airport reserves.

That means if an application to the European Regional Development Fund for the remaining cash is unsuccessful, the only alternative will be to take out a loan.

Diana blamed the Civil Aviation Authority for the overspend, saying they insisted on last minute changes to the plan, which cost £230,000 to implement.

The edges of the runways had to be redesigned to soften them too. That cost £65,000 more.

And resurfacing the grass runway and apron cost an extra £175,000, because the soil was deeper than expected from the initial surveys.

Changes announced last month to the controversial drop-off area at the front of the building have bumped it up by a further £60,000.

Cllr Adrian Davis said he hadn’t realise there was “quite such a huge overspend.”

He said if that had been known earlier, the Council could have made sure a “reasonable” contingency fund was available.

In February, the Transport Committee raised airport fees by 5% in order to refill the rapidly depleting reserves. That was increased to 10% by the Full Council just two weeks later, as the scale of the financial problems became evident.



9 Responses to Development Officer Blames CAA For St Mary’s Airport Overspend

  1. meme May 3, 2015 at 7:56 am

    Why is it that every time the Senior Strategic Strategy Manager gets EU funding she never gets it right and there is always an enormous overspend; and more money required to cover the shortfall, very bad estimation methinks. Something not quite right somewhere, heads never seem to roll and it’s about time.they did. Someone somewhere has got to listen as these Islands cannot afford to pay for vast loans. So much unnecessary development has gone on for far too long. Come on Councillors start leading instead of being lead,

  2. Cornwall72 May 1, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    An overspend and the building is still riddled with defects. What is the true cost of this project I wonder and I’d be interested to see the caa’s response to being told it was their fault.

    • Ewart Less May 2, 2015 at 11:39 pm

      This Chairman is incapable of putting the needs of the community to the fore.
      Having sated her personal ambition by wearing the chain of office she seems to have lost her grasp.

      She offers nothing, no direction, no leadership no reproach when it is so glaringly needed, not even a comment to the electorate about the latest £582,000 airport overspend for goodness sake!.

      Our community has never been served so badly.

  3. Soloman May 1, 2015 at 4:51 pm

    Let’s blame the CAA!
    For heaven’s sake when will this council take responsibility for its cavalier attitude to spending the public purse, obeying planning regulations and ensuring that decisions are properly considered and agreed by members.
    Pat Hayden has rightly said that in business ‘heads would roll’, why should this council be above the same standards of conduct and discipline.
    Someone should be held to account and that someone is definitely not in the form of the CAA, we need to look closer for a culprit and examine the conduct of our elected members who have allowed this saga to rumble from one expensive failure to another.
    As for the suggestion that the grass runway and apron cost an extra £175,00 because the soil was deeper than expected……..a man with a shovel let loose for a week could probably have saved us £174,500.
    I am waiting for our Chairman to have the decency to make a public statement on this debacle.

  4. where's Wally May 1, 2015 at 3:24 pm

    Time was the current Chairman would have immediately pointed at the nearest Chief Executive and set about his downfall, trouble is that course of action is wearing a bit thin! The moment has arrived for the Chairman to do the honourable thing; this kind of nonsense just cannot be allowed to go on and on

  5. Allan hicks May 1, 2015 at 1:34 pm

    You couldn’t make this up, why do the edges of the runways need to be softened ? ?

  6. Pat Hayden May 1, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    There was absolutely nothing wrong with the old turning circle – why spend money on altering something which works well? Since this whole scheme was not put forward to the councillors for approval (or not), but was pushed ahead by officers, can we hope that some-one will be disciplined for a complete waste of tax payers money? Or is that too much to hope? If this was a business, heads would roll.

  7. Gobsmacked May 1, 2015 at 11:43 am

    Well there’s a surprise…
    Perhaps if they just did what was actually needed instead of spending god knows how much on the terminal and fancy chairs they (we) wouldn’t be in this position…
    How much is it costing for the additional works to improve the parking facilities?

    It’s not like they weren’t aware of the issues before they just ploughed on ahead and did what they wanted and to hell with the fare paying public.

    The whole saga is a shambles just like the Porthcressa “lets spend lots of money on low level path lights that don’t work and plant pine trees on a sandbank”

    • Adam Morton, St.Martins May 1, 2015 at 1:10 pm

      You won’t get any answers- I have tried! They can’t justify themselves so they just tell people its “negative reporting” and of course everyone on the gravy train supports it!