An eleventh-hour attempt by Sky Crew Services to rework the contract for the fixed-base operator (FBO) airport manager position is now in question.The city had already decided earlier this year that Sky Crew Services, with Stacy Stock and Alexander Habraken would fill the airport manager position.
However, at Monday’s meeting, a last-minute agenda item was added, an update on the FBO position. City Council Ward 3 member Justin Arneson stated to council that an email was received July 16 from Sky Crew Services that they weren’t satisfied with the current contract, and wouldn’t be signing it because it didn’t reflect the original proposal request for their bid.
The three sticking points included are material costs to the city. The original proposal entailed the group doing snow removal and mowing, fuel transportation, and the group also wants a reduced flowage fee for each calendar day the fuel system has malfunctioned by $200. The city would pay this fee if it is not working properly. Arneson stated that coming out of a June 23 meeting, none of these items were brought up at that time and July 16 is the first time he, the work group and council member Krista Hagberg, had known of Sky Crew’s concerns.
In a heated discussion with council members, Alexander Habraken with Sky Crew Services explained, “Are you saying the contract changed because you hired us? They handed out a 46-page contract, it would have been handy if they would have handed that out at the very beginning, and said ‘Hey, this is what we are going to be working with.’ Instead we got handed the sample contract, and said this is what you should expect, then we got handed the 46-page contract … and then we got an email saying we need to sort this out by tomorrow.”
City Attorney Rolf Nyklemoe stated, “I’d like to clarify, we have an 18-page contract that includes a signature page, it’s not a 46 page contract. Of the 46 pages that are included in the contract, 20 of those are your exhibits … Alexandria has 11 pages in their current contract … Moorhead, they have 18 pages and they have two different contracts, so this isn’t anything that’s out of the ordinary. I would challenge anyone to look at the tasks presented to the FBO and tell us which tasks are unreasonable, that were not expected. We are hiring someone who doesn’t have any experience, and contemplating that, why wouldn’t you want details? It’s an airport.”
Council member Brent Tompson weighed in saying, “We’ve been doing it this way for years, it’s called accountability. You can make the minor changes, but you have until the 23rd to sign it.”
The matter was ultimately tabled until the meeting July 28, before the whole council to consider the changes Sky Crew Services would like to make.