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Westmoreland County Airport Authority OKs repair contracts

| Tuesday, July 8, 2014, 11:18 p.m.

The Westmoreland County Airport Authority on Tuesday tentatively approved awarding three contracts, totaling about $886,000, for routine repairs at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in Unity and Rostraver Airport in Rostraver.

The largest contract, at $740,409, will cover routine rehabilitation of part of the parallel taxiway near the main runway at the Unity airport. It was awarded to the lone bidder, Derry Construction Co. in Derry.

A $71,525 contract was awarded to Rhino Construction Inc. of Lower Burrell for rehabilitation of the concrete aircraft de-icing pad near the main terminal. Authority Executive Director Gabe Monzo said the concrete is beginning to crack on the edges. Rhino's bid was the lowest of four received.

The Rostraver contract, for $73,756, was awarded to Peter J. Caruso and Sons Inc. of Pittsburgh for rehabilitation of the apron near the hangar area. Caruso was the lone bidder, according to airport officials.

“All of the contracts are subject to federal and state grant approval,” said airport engineer Scott Kunselman of GAI Consultants.

Kunselman hopes that the grants will be approved in time for construction to begin “sometime in September.”

Under the grant proposal, the Federal Aviation Administration would pay 90 percent of project costs, with the PennDOT Bureau of Aviation and the authority each picking up 5 percent.

In other business, Monzo announced that a mandatory public hearing will be held in the airport's main administration office for renewal of the $4.50 passenger facilities fee charged to each commercial passenger departing Arnold Palmer.

About $500,000 is collected annually from the passenger surcharge, which is used for construction projects at the airport, Monzo said.

Airport authority member Donald Rossi said the Unity airport is seeking donors to help defray the cost of the recent purchase of two, 12-passenger buses to transport commercial passengers from the airport parking areas to the terminal building.

The buses were purchased from Vogue Limousine Service in Irwin for $39,000 each after the airport's old bus broke down.

Paul Peirce is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-850-2860 or ppeirce@tribweb.com.

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