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Financial Woes Prompt Port Authority to Pull Back on Carnival Sponsorship

June 18, 2008 — The numbers looked bleak in the monthly report delivered Wednesday to the V.I. Port Authority's governing board, with revenues for April 2008 down by nearly $300,000 from the preceding month.
Financial woes have depleted the agency's coffers so much that it voted to reduce by half the amounts that it gives for Carnival on St. Thomas and St. Croix and other community events for this year, and discontinue sponsorship in the future.
The reduction came in response to a request for continued co-sponsorship of fireworks for St. John's Fourth of July Celebration. Last year the agency gave $10,000 to each of the islands' main festivals.
The board noted that the executive director has some discretionary funds for advertising that could be used to support the events.
The only increase in revenue was in the aviation division, with earnings up by $81,413. However, discussion focused on the divisions billing process, which in some cases is as much as two months behind.
The slow billing process could have far-reaching ramifications if the companies leasing the properties were to file for bankruptcy, said Don C. Mills, the board's legal counsel.
"You are not billing timely and you come complaining to us," board member Gordon A Finch admonished the staff. "Get your act together."
Mills noted that the Federal Aviation Administration had decided the authority's financial hardships warranted reductions in some of the fines the FAA levied for conditions at Henry E. Rohlson Airport on St. Croix.
"We met with the FAA," Mills said. The fines "were reduced to $100,000 with the understanding that they would make additional determination about whether to lower them or not."
The $240,000 fine was assessed for the condition of runway and taxiway surfaces, as well as for directional painting on the runways and signs.
"We are in compliance with most of the violations, and the balance is being taken care of through an existing contract," Mills said.
In one of the only bright spots of the day, the board voted to continue to pay the full amount of medical insurance for VIPA employees through the end of the year.
Board members also decided to study a proposal from Bohlke International Airways to sublet a portion of its space to Seaborne Airways before making a decision.
Board members attending were Chairman Cassan Pancham, Darryl Smalls, Albert Bryan Jr., Vincent Frazer, Yvonne Thraen, Robert O'Connor and Finch.
For more information about the Port Authority, visit viport.com .
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June 18, 2008 -- The numbers looked bleak in the monthly report delivered Wednesday to the V.I. Port Authority's governing board, with revenues for April 2008 down by nearly $300,000 from the preceding month.
Financial woes have depleted the agency's coffers so much that it voted to reduce by half the amounts that it gives for Carnival on St. Thomas and St. Croix and other community events for this year, and discontinue sponsorship in the future.
The reduction came in response to a request for continued co-sponsorship of fireworks for St. John's Fourth of July Celebration. Last year the agency gave $10,000 to each of the islands' main festivals.
The board noted that the executive director has some discretionary funds for advertising that could be used to support the events.
The only increase in revenue was in the aviation division, with earnings up by $81,413. However, discussion focused on the divisions billing process, which in some cases is as much as two months behind.
The slow billing process could have far-reaching ramifications if the companies leasing the properties were to file for bankruptcy, said Don C. Mills, the board's legal counsel.
"You are not billing timely and you come complaining to us," board member Gordon A Finch admonished the staff. "Get your act together."
Mills noted that the Federal Aviation Administration had decided the authority's financial hardships warranted reductions in some of the fines the FAA levied for conditions at Henry E. Rohlson Airport on St. Croix.
"We met with the FAA," Mills said. The fines "were reduced to $100,000 with the understanding that they would make additional determination about whether to lower them or not."
The $240,000 fine was assessed for the condition of runway and taxiway surfaces, as well as for directional painting on the runways and signs.
"We are in compliance with most of the violations, and the balance is being taken care of through an existing contract," Mills said.
In one of the only bright spots of the day, the board voted to continue to pay the full amount of medical insurance for VIPA employees through the end of the year.
Board members also decided to study a proposal from Bohlke International Airways to sublet a portion of its space to Seaborne Airways before making a decision.
Board members attending were Chairman Cassan Pancham, Darryl Smalls, Albert Bryan Jr., Vincent Frazer, Yvonne Thraen, Robert O'Connor and Finch.
For more information about the Port Authority, visit viport.com .
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.