State to Collect Unpaid Airport Landing Fees
By Maui Now Staff
The State of Hawaiʻi will collect $264,994.99 in billed but unpaid landing fees from two commercial users, after the Hawaiʻi Supreme Court upheld the state Department of Transportation’s authority to charge such fees at state airports, Attorney General Doug Chin announced on Monday, June 29.
Public Aviation Hawaiʻi Inc. and Hale Olele Corp., two commercial users of Dillingham Airport on Oʻahu’s North Shore, rejected the state transportation’s authority to charge landing fees and refused to pay invoices dating back to 2012.
More than $200,000 had been held in trust while the case was pending, and by effect of the recent decision, may now be collected by the State of Hawaiʻi.
The landing fees are used to offset the substantial deficit to operate the Dillingham Airfield, which is currently subsidized by the state,” said DOT Director Ford Fuchigami. “It is imperative that airlines and concessionaires pay for license fees in order to keep the facility open. Collecting the money ensures fairness to all aeronautical users in Hawaiʻi.”
“The Supreme Court supported the rule of law and an agency’s authority to charge fees for a public purpose,” said Deputy Attorney General Jack Rosenzweig, the attorney handling the case for the state. “We are pleased with this decision.”