A review of the V.I. Port Authority’s financials show that the agency emerged from the past fiscal year with a $9 million operating loss, according to staff members.
VIPA’s board receives a financial update every month, but the one presented at Wednesday’s meeting on St. Thomas was a look back at the last 12 months, since the authority’s fiscal year ended in September. Officials said the report was just an update until the final is published in December.
According to the report, the authority’s aviation division continues to be the “primary contributor” to the operating loss, while the marine division rounded out the year with a $21,000 operating profit.
Officials said later that they are ramping up collection efforts for many aviation tenants, including airlines such as American and Seaborne that have large outstanding balances.
Operating revenues earned during the last 12 months was $53.1 million, while expenses totaled $8.9 million. Officials said that while total operating revenues were above budget by $486,000, total operating expenses were more, and above budget by $743,000.
Overall total operating expenses were below last year’s by $5.7 million, showing decreases in utilities, professional costs, insurance, depreciation and other expense categories.
Outstanding receivables total $4.9 million at the end of September. Of that amount, $.3.4 million are within the authority’s central divisions and $2.5 million of that is less than 30 days old, according to a memorandum discussed Wednesday that’s dated Nov. 6.
For the Crown Bay Center, year-to-date accounts receivables, as of the end of October, totaled $439,513, which property manager Ava Penn said is mostly because of one tenant, St. Thomas Dialysis Center.
During the meeting, the board also approved the write-off of $256,022 in “uncollectible” accounts, and discussed with VIPA Executive Director Carlton Dowe the policies for former employees and board members may still not be paying parking fees at the airport.
While no names or specific numbers were given, Dowe said it was recently discovered that “there was a lot of people that have a pass or something else,” but that those practices have been discontinued.
“Unless the board says otherwise, everyone will have to pay moving forward,” Dowe said.