The Durango-La Plata County Airport is starting preliminary design work on a rehabilitation project of the main taxiway that is likely to start in 2015.
Project engineer Ben Gonzales with Jviation Inc. said he would be identifying areas in need of total replacement and partial reconstruction this fall at an airport commission meeting Thursday. Jviation also will be working on cost estimates and preliminary design.
Airport Director Kip Turner said the project would be a partnership with the Federal Aviation Administration.
Airport commissioners also began discussing the airport’s proposed 2015 budget and a potential 18.5 percent increase in staff costs to hire four additional employees at the beginning of the year. The airport initially budgeted $1.145 million on staff this year, and the proposed additional staff would bring total staff spending to just less than $1.36 million in 2015.
Total proposed expenditures for 2015 are $2,926,746 million compared with total expenditures of $2,864,597 million in the 2014 budget, a proposed 2.17 percent annual increase for 2015.
Turner said the airport has been chronically understaffed, and it is in need of more help.
Airport Commissioner Gary Derck said he was less worried about revenue falling and more concerned about rising expenses.
“We’re really tight in other expenses like fuel,” he said.
The budget is expected to be approved later this year.