For the first time in nearly 30 years, Sherman Municipal Airport has updated its rules and ordinances. The Sherman City Council approved a set of ordinance amendments for the city’s airport during its Monday night meeting in an agenda with multiple items relating to the airport.
The amendments come in a time of renewed interest in the development and growth of the airport.
“This really is the first time we’ve had an update in nearly three decades,” Sherman Finance Director Mary Lawrence said. “But the time is good and we are ready.”
Here are four things to know about the new ordinances:
1. Without an airport advisory committee change was hard
One of the complications that the city had in updating the ordinance in recent years was the dissolution of the airport advisory committee in 2012, Lawrence said. At the time, the board was dissolved amid questions about the future direction of the airport that are only now getting answered.
“There was a time in the not-so-recent past when the airport faced headwinds, if you will excuse the pun, regarding its future,” Sherman Community and Support Services Manager Nate Strauch said.
2. Many new ordinances will bring the airport in line with current standards
Many of the changes to the ordinance reflect changes not only to the aviation industry itself, but also the laws regarding aircraft and flight. Since the ordinance was previously passed, aviation has seen an influx of sport and experimental aircraft that require their own form of licensing. As such, the ordinances were relaxed to reflect this shift in the industry, Lawrence said.
3. Helping pilots get necessary materials
The previous ordinance did not allow for aviation gas to be poured into an outside container and transported to a plane not at the airport. However, with the growth of air strips and home aviation, this has become a need at Sherman Municipal.
4. Helping agreements with neighboring developments
In May, the city announced that it had been approached by a developer with plans to develop an aviation-oriented gated community directly adjacent to the airport.
Silver Falcon Aero Estates would feature more than 50 residential homes with some units featuring attached hangars. The development appeared to be moving forward Monday as the council approved the sale of land in the airport perimeter for the development.
Lawrence said this has been the only development that has sought this kind of agreement, but others have expressed interest in land on the airport property for development of hangar space. Under the new ordinance it would be possible for outside entities to own hangars and other buildings at the airport.