Weather station may be done at year’s end

JOHNSTOWN – Fulton County officials are hoping to complete a $212,712 project to construct an automated weather observation station at the county airport by year’s end.

That assessment was provided by county Planning Director James Mraz this morning following action on the project last week by the Board of Supervisors.

“We need the [Federal Aviation Administration] to award the [final construction] grant,” Mraz said.

Once contracts are signed, he said the project will take another 60 to 90 days to complete.

The county’s 2013 capital budget contains an appropriation for the purchase and installation of the weather station at the airport, off Route 67 in the town of Johnstown. Local pilots have told county officials the weather data would be extremely helpful for landing and taking off at the airport.

Mraz said in July that Fulton County has about $600,000 in non-primary entitlement funds available from the FAA for projects at the airport. Those funds pay for 90 percent of a project’s cost. The state pays for 5 percent, and the county pays 5 percent.

The Board of Supervisors last week authorized board Chairman William Waldron to execute grant agreements with the FAA and state Department of Transportation for the automated weather observation station.

The FAA grant will cover $191,440 of the cost of the project. The state and county will each kick in $10,636 shares for the project.

Supervisors also awarded a $190,420 bid to O’Connell Electric of Victor, Ontario County, for construction of the AWOS project.

A third resolution passed by the board last week authorized a $20,291 contract with the Binghamton firm McFarland Johnson for construction administration for the project. The FAA grant will cover $18,261 of that contract, with the state and county kicking in equal $1,014 shares.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at