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AOPA actions prompt FAA support of pilot-controlled lighting at Florida airportAOPA actions prompt FAA support of pilot-controlled lighting at Florida airport

U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Aviation Administration
ORLANDO AIRPORTS DISTRICT OFFICE
5950 Hazeltine National Dr., Suite 400
Orlando, Florida 32822-5024
Phone: (407) 812-6331 Fax: (407) 812-6978

Mr. Joseph Zeoli
Managing Director Administration and Finance
City of St. Petersburg
P.O. Box 2842
St. Petersburg, Florida 33731-2842

RE: Albert Whitted Airport; St. Petersburg, Florida
Runway 6/24

Dear Mr. Zeoli:

We have received a copy of a letter from Ms. Anne J. Esposito, Vice President of the Aircraft Owners and Pilot Association (AOPA), to Council Member John Bryan of the City of St. Petersburg, dated February 20, 2003, regarding the Albert Whitted Airport.

It is referenced in Ms. Esposito's correspondence that according to the Airport/Facilities Directory, two runways are currently open for operations around the clock at Albert Whitted Airport. Both runways have lights, but only Runway 18/36 has pilot-controlled lighting during the hours that the air traffic control tower is closed.

As you are aware, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) funded the rehabilitation of Runway 6/24 lights in 2001 under the Airports Improvement Program (AIP). As part of this grant, the City of St. Petersburg (as owner and operator of the Albert Whitted Airport) accepted the obligation to keep the airport and all facilities which are necessary to serve the aeronautical users of the airport open and operated at all times in a safe and serviceable condition. This would include the lighting system associated with Runway 6/24. We would encourage you to pursue the installation of necessary lighting equipment on Runway 6/24 to allow pilots to manually (i.e., radio controlled, etc.) turn on the lighting system on that runway or to keep the lighting system on when the air traffic control tower is closed. Failure to do so would place the airport in noncompliance with Grant Assurance No. 19, "Operation and Maintenance," under the "Terms and Conditions of Accepting Airport Improvement Program Grants."

We would appreciate if you could advise us as to how the City intends to resolve this matter. Should you have any questions, please contact this office.

Sincerely,

ORIGINAL SIGNED BY

Vernon P. Rupinta
Program Manager

cc: FDOT/7

March 11, 2003

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