On Tuesday (30th August) I proposed, and Peter Campbell seconded, that a report, from the Council’s Airport Working Party, on the monitoring of activities at Manston Airport including Night Flights policy be adopted by the Thanet District Council (TDC) Overview and Scrutiny Committee, and forwarded to Cabinet. The committee voted 8 to 7 with all Labour Councillors and Cllr King in favour.
“1(a) The Council adopts a policy of not allowing scheduled, pre-planned or otherwise timetabled flights between the hours of 23:00 and 07:00
(b) That a period of 1 hour at either end of the flying day be allowed for late/early arriving flights only.
(c) That a penalty be applied to any flights arriving during the 1 hour periods
(d) No take-offs will be allowed between 23:00 and 07:00 hours
(e) A schedule of exceptions to the above will be prepared to include ‘mercy flights’, and flights, medical emergencies, coastguard movements etc.
2. In respect of aspirations to be carried into a successor to the current Section.106 agreement;
(a) Consideration be given to requesting the Airport owners whoever they may be at any given time to contribute to the cost of a TDC Airport Officer and that requirement is included in a new section 106 Agreement;
(b) A new Section 106 Agreement is negotiated within 12 months.
3. A further Term of Reference be added to the Airport Working Party; purpose that investigation is undertaken to the relationship between a possible Parkway Station and the Airport and the current need for it.
4. Quarterly or half yearly reports are received by Thanet District Council on the performance of the Manston International Airport as measured against the section 106 Agreement.
5. Thanet District Council be recommended to ask the Manston International Airport operator to review the Kent International Airport Consultative Committee (KIACC).”
All of this is good sensible stuff, with a few provisos.
- TDC needs to have sight of Manston’s schedules in order to ensure that 1(b) isn’t open to abuse.
- The system of fines for 1(c) should be severe enough to be a deterrent – the current regime of doubling the fine for repeat offences would be a good starting point.
- Does 2(b) mean that the requirement to rengotiate a new S106 every 12 months is written into the next S106, or that the current S106 should be renegotiated within 12 months?
- Manston should be reporting, as per Cllr Green’s point 4, on a monthly basis.