While the Commonwealth Ports Authority’s airport revenue has been steadily increasing, its seaport revenue continues to decline, based on the updated records of the agency in the past three fiscal years.
CPA comptroller Skye Lynn Aldan disclosed yesterday that actual revenue for the past three fiscal years both in aviation and non-aviation activities show significant spikes at 14 percent in 2012 and 4 percent in 2013.
Records show that in fiscal year 2013, airport revenue was at $12.612 million, slightly higher than 2012’s $12.180 million. Fiscal year 2011’s operating revenue was at $10.636 million.
According to Aldan, airport revenue is projected to reach $12.281 million in fiscal year 2014, which is slightly lower than 2013’s.
“We are budgeted at 129 percent coverage, beyond the 125 percent requirement. It should be noted that this does not take into account estimated PFC [passenger facility charges] revenues. With PFC revenues, the airport exceeds the required coverage at 236 percent. Although we exceed the required debt ratio coverage, caution must always be taken and expenses must be continually monitored in order to stay in compliance with the bond indenture,” according to Aldan.
The agency’s fiscal year 2014 budget, which was approved by the board yesterday, shows that personnel expenses will decrease due to the withdrawal of employees from the defined benefit retirement plan, resulting in a decrease in employer contributions to the Retirement Fund.
For employees remaining in the defined benefit plan, Aldan said that retirement contributions are budgeted at 30 percent.
“Operating expenses have increased by 8 percent as compared to FY 2013. This condition is mainly due to the increased utility expenses, primarily for water and sewer; anticipated increases in diesel fuel costs; as well as an increase in contractual services mostly for environmental consulting services,” said Aldan.
A 17-percent increase in insurance premiums is also expected to add to the agency’s expenses in fiscal year 2014.
While airport revenue shows positive signs, seaport is showing otherwise.
“Actual revenues for the past three fiscal years show a continuous decline in seaport harbor and non-harbor activities,” said Aldan.
She noted that revenues decreased by 5 percent from fiscal years 2012 to 2013 and by 4 percent from 2011 to 2012.
Audited data show that seaport revenues totaled $6.353 million in fiscal year 2011; $6.065 million in fiscal year 2012; and $5.740 million in fiscal year 2013.
For fiscal year 2014, projected seaport revenue is $5.6 million: $4.2 million from harbor and $1.3 million for non-harbor activities. This represents a 3 percent drop from 2013’s revenue.
“The decline in projected revenues for FY 2014 follows the trend of actual revenues received,” according to Aldan.
Overall personnel expenses, meantime, have increased due to the transfer of one ports police officer each from the Rota and Tinian airports to the Rota and Tinian seaports. This transfer, she said, was done to satisfy the harbor patrol requirement.
The budgeted operational expenses, she said, also show a decrease of 34 percent compared to the actual operation expenses in 2013.