Airports. Did someone mention Airports? The Jackson Municipal Airport popped up in the news this week as the Jackson City Council learned that Senator Josh Harkins will file a bill in the 2016 session of the Mississippi Legislature that will alter the governing board of the airport. The airport is currently governed by a board of five commissioners appointed by the city of Jackson. The bill will replace that board with a seven-member board representing Hinds, Madison, and Rankin Counties. Josh would appoint the members.
Make no mistake, this fight is going to be a battle royale. However, JJ is going to provide a snapshot of the current state of the airport as presented to the commissioners earlier this month. Most of the loudmouths opining on both sides of the issue have no clue as to what goes on at the airport. They should read the rest of this post if they want to learn.
The number of passengers flying in and out of the airport was 917,781 in 2015. That was a decrease of 8.4% from 1,002,218 in 2014 (as of November 30 in each year.) The month of November enjoyed an increase of 4% over November 2014 as it increased from 84,162 passengers to 87,601. Air cargo was down 4.6% as well as it slipped from 65.9 million tons to 62.9 million tons).
JJ does not have the statistics from the same month in earlier years but can use August 2015, 2014, and 2013 YTD statistics to provide a glimpse at JMAA's performance. These numbers were gleaned from the reports provided to the board at its regular meetings. The reports are based on statistics on July 31 of each year.
August 2015: 573,175 (-11.3%) (-20% 2013-2015)
August 2014: 646,328 (-9.0%)
August 2013: 710,076
Thus JMAA's traffic at Medger-Ever International Airport has fallen 20% in just two years.
Make no mistake. Southwest's departure meant one thing: Delta domination. Here are the market share statistics as of November 30, 2015. See pages 21-22 of the documents posted below.
Delta: 456,204 passengers (46%)
American: 200,307 passengers (20%)
US Airways: 141,318 passengers (14%)
United: 199,636 passengers (20%)
It all comes down to dollars and cents. A quick review of JMAA finances reveals the following information. (pps.31-33 below) The information is based on statistics of November 30, 2015.
Total property plant & equipment: $97 milllion
Unrestricted cash: $16.2 million
Total current assets: $47 million
Bonds (liability): $35 million
Aviation income: $1,076 million ($34,212 over projections)
Non-Aviation Income: $1.418 million ($23,529 over projections)
Concession income: $423,446 ($9,307 over projections)
Total income: $2.95 million ($68,849 over projections)
Salaries: $796,209 ($148,392 under projections)
Total employee expenses: $1,225 million ($234,645 under projections)
Total operating expenses: $2.124 million ($386,698 under projections)
Net operating income: $894,313 ($438,765 over projections)
Kingfish note: Bottom line: The airport is operating at a profit. The end of the year audit in 2014 showed a loss. The new CEO got expenses substantially under budget and increased revenue while traffic decreased. The Kingfish is starting to form the opinion that Mr. Newman is doing a better job than did Mr. Vanderleest in running the airport. Obviously that will be heresy in some circles. Get over it. This is what is called managing the books.