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Posts posted by cpoxon

  1. http://www.timescall.com/longmont-local-news/ci_29508442/longmont-airport-board-oks-mile-hi-skydiving-lease


    The Longmont Airport Advisory Board, after detailed questions on the whole situation, recommended Thursday night that the City Council approve a lease replacing a faulty 2007 agreement with Mile-Hi Skydiving.

    The City Council will next consider whether to approve the lease at its Feb. 23 meeting.

    Mile-Hi owner Frank Casares signed a 20-year lease with the city in 2007 for 180,723 square feet of land. Per the original lease, Casares was to pay $41,566 per year starting when he applied for a grading permit for the land. But Casares never requested that permit and so never paid any of the seven years' lease rates in full, constructing instead a temporary quonset hut structure still in use for parachute packing.

    In roughly 2013 or 2014, city management discovered the faulty lease and realized that it may violate rules the Vance Brand Municipal Airport must follow in order to receive Federal Aviation Administration grants.

    "The reason this is a problem with the FAA grant assurances is because they don't allow people to use property without paying for it," Airport Manager David Slayter said at Thursday's meeting. Slayter was hired in 2015.

    City Manager Harold Dominguez said the City Council directed staff to resolve the lease issue with Mile-Hi so that the city wouldn't be involved in litigation.

    Casares paid $36,634 over four installments as part of an interim lease put in place while negotiations were ongoing last year.

    When the negotiations were over, the city and Casares had agreed on a replacement lease that, if approved by City Council, would start retroactively in October 2015 and last for 12 years. The lease is only for the 12,780 square feet under the quonset hut, at a rate of $4,507.51 per year.

    Responding to a statement from a board member about the lower amount of money in the new lease, Slayter said he prefers to be positive.

    A Mile Hi Skydiving plane taxis after coming in for a landing at Vance Brand Municipal Airport in April 2015.
    A Mile Hi Skydiving plane taxis after coming in for a landing at Vance Brand Municipal Airport in April 2015. (Matthew Jonas / Staff Photographer)
    "Before, they were not required to pay so we were getting zero," Slayter said. "We're getting 4,507 versus zero and not having to go to litigation."

    This specific Mile-Hi lease revealed a flaw with the Airport Advisory Board agendas for the past 19 years — the board was supposed to be reviewing these types of leases before they went to council, but city staff can't find any evidence those reviews occurred.

    Dominguez said that as far as he could tell, the last specific airport lease (not the master leases that serve as templates) the board reviewed was in 1997, even though the ordinance creating the board directs it to review airport leases.

    Board member Kurt Hansen, calling the Mile-Hi lease issue a "hot potato," said it was curious that after not reviewing specific land leases, this one was the one kicked back to the board.

    Dominguez said from now on, specific leases will be reviewed by the board before being sent to council. The board members, at the end of the meeting Thursday, reached a consensus that they need to talk about whether they should review every lease before council sees them, or just ones with major variations from the master lease.

    Board member Daniel Peters queried Dominguez and Slayter about a section of the new lease that said Mile-Hi "shall comply" with airport rules and regulations "including, but not limited to, the Airport's noise abatement procedures."

    Peters asked why the word "shall" is used if the noise abatement procedures are voluntary and said he feared requiring Mile-Hi to follow the procedures might violate an FAA rule prohibiting the city from discriminating against certain businesses.

    Mile-Hi's noise and the FAA rules about discrimination were major factors in the lawsuit some Longmont and Boulder County residents filed against Mile-Hi owner Frank Casares in 2013, alleging that his planes were too loud and it constituted a nuisance. A Boulder County district judge decided the case in Mile-Hi's favor last year.

    Slayter and Dominguez said the various attorneys, including the attorneys specializing in airport law the city contracted as special counsel, did not see any red flags in the wording.

    "The airport's noise abatement procedures specify that they're voluntary, and this is an agreement to comply with the voluntary noise abatement procedures," Slayter said.

    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  2. jeffrey27rj

    That chart is awesome. Why don't we have this for US jumps? Or, better yet....for all jumps worldwide? I guess because some might not track as diligently is the answer. Love the breakdowns. Thanks!

    The BPA is a regulatory body and requires all of their dropzones to file reports (injuries/malfunctions+incidents/off-landings/third-party claims). The USPA is not so has no power to require the same.
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  3. http://www.timescall.com/top-stories/ci_29185177/longmont-city-council-meet-privately-about-mile-hi


    The Longmont City Council will meet behind closed doors on Tuesday to discuss the city's position on a parcel of land that Mile-Hi Skydiving is using at the Longmont Vance Brand Municipal Airport.

    Longmont city officials and Mile-Hi owner Frank Casares signed a 20-year lease for a parcel of land in 2007, but the contract contained a clause that said that the first $41,566 payment would be due within 30 days of Mile-Hi obtaining a grading permit for the land.

    Mile-Hi, however, never obtained that grading permit and so didn't pay the initial payment in full then. As of August, the company was using the land as a landing zone and a location to store equipment.

    City Manager Harold Dominguez told the Times-Call in August that he realized the status of the lease agreement in 2015 might violate a Federal Aviation Administration rule against cities leasing out land for free. The violation of the FAA rule could have put the grant money the airport receives from the FAA in jeopardy.

    Airport Manager David Slayter said in August that the city told the FAA about the violation and is taking steps to correct it, which could mitigate potential consequences for what may be a violation of rules.

    Casares agreed to a short-term agreement that went through June, when he would pay the city $36,634 over four payments. The city was trying to negotiate an extension to that agreement where Casares would pay an additional $16,281 by Oct. 1.

    Assistant City Manager Shawn Lewis said Monday that the extension agreement was never signed. Slayter said, however that Casares is paid up through October.

    Casares, through a representative, didn't return requests for comment about either the city's upcoming meeting or the unsigned extension agreement.

    The executive session notice posted on the city's website notes that Dominguez and City Attorney Eugene Mei wish to discuss "negotiation positions and strategy on the Mile Hi Aviation Center, LLC, south parcel lease, operations and potential noise mitigation measures"

    Local group Citizens for Quiet Skies sued Mile-Hi, alleging that their planes were exceptionally loud and represented a nuisance to residents of some of Longmont and unincorporated Boulder County. Citizens for Quiet Skies lost the lawsuit. While that suit was working its way through district court, the city contracted with Kaplan Kirsch Rockwell LLP, which touts itself as the biggest law firm in the country specializing in aviation law.

    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  4. Please keep the politics to Speakers Corner.



    The Burning Man community lost one of its own in the Paris attacks on Friday.

    Pierro Jacare Innocenti, 40, of Paris, was killed when gunmen stormed the sold-out Eagles of Death Metal show that Innocenti was attending at the Bataclan Concert Hall. Innocenti posted a photo on his Facebook page of the concert billboard with the comment “Rock!” at 8:45 p.m., less than an hour before three gunmen gunned down 89 people at the venue.

    On Friday evening, gunmen and suicide bombers with the Islamic State, or ISIS, almost simultaneously targeted the concert hall, a major stadium, restaurants and bars in Paris, leaving at least 129 people dead and hundreds wounded.

    During the weekend, Burners remembered Innocenti by posting photos on social media of Innocenti along with photos of notes to Innocenti left at candlelit memorials in Paris. Some of the notes reading "Pour toi Pierro" had the Burning Man insignia, a stick figure-like interpretation of the Burning Man, and some read "dusty hugs" and "In Dust We Trust."

    Burners encouraged each other over social media to love and respect one another in honor of Innocenti, who several people said was a generous and kind Burner. Several people changed their Facebook profile photos to Innocenti’s.

    Innocenti owned a restaurant, Chez Livio, in Paris. Livio co-owned the Italian restaurant with his brother Charles, according to a French daily, Le Parisien.

    The Innocenti brothers’ grandfather first opened the restaurant in 1964, and it has received such celebrities as Brigitte Bardot, Nicolas Sarkozy and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, according to the Huffington Post.

    Innocenti’s Facebook photos show him as an avid Burner, skydiver and surfer. His cover shot shows him skydiving over Black Rock City, the crescent-shaped city that forms in the Black Rock Desert during Burning Man each year.

    “He was incredibly inviting and friendly,” said Jennifer Evans, a Burner who met Innocenti while skydiving at Burning Man this year.

    This year and last, Innocenti “flew” with Burning Sky, a camp of skydivers that group together for annual dives over Burning Man, according to Chris Romp, one of the camp leaders. France is known as a skydiving-enthusiastic country, second only to the U.S. in the sport’s popularity, Romp said.

    It is not known how many years he attended Burning Man.

    “The man burns in 364 days,” Innocenti wrote on his Facebook wall on Sept. 7, the day that the Man burned this year. He later posted a compilation video of this year's Burning Man, first writing "Welcome home brother" as his status.

    Innocenti also posted a video of himself sailing through the air over Lake Tahoe in what he called the “most perfect after burn” on Sept. 9, just a day after Burning Man officially ended.

    More than 80,000 people attend Burning Man, fewer than 5 percent of them from Europe, according to the 2014 Black Rock City census. About 3 percent of Burners speak French as their first language, though there are no reports of how many Burners are from France, based on the 2014 census.

    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  5. yuri_base

    The main emphasis will be made not on traditional visual use in skydiving freefall (since today's screens are still quite poor in direct sun), but on things that smart devices can give to us that "dumb" altimeters can't - taptic and audible feedback, useful features on a ride to altitude in skydiving or mountain hike in BASE, data recording and analysis, and so on.

    I was thinking about the haptic feedback with my Smart altimeter. The vibrator(!) in the Sony SmartWatch 3 is pretty feeble and whilst I can notice it on the ground, I'm not sure I would in freefall. Not to mention the battery wear it would induce, but it's a nice idea especially for those who "flare when they hear the crickets" ;)
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  6. yuri_base

    Craig, that's awesome! I'm curious, what's the barometer sample rate on your Sony watch? Sony Z3 Duos phone has 30Hz.

    Maybe my quick Google search was wrong? It says Barometer: N/A (Accelerometer: 255 Hz)

    Edit: When I googled "Smartwatch3 and altimeter" the press releases it was coming back with also included the SmartBand which does include an altimeter :-(
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  7. Hi Yuri, I'm also developing a smart altimeter. I'm not sure my watch has an altimeter (Sony Smartwatch 3) - wow, I just checked, it does! Hmm, that'll teach me to check. I'm developing my altimeter app on the phone and it communicates updates to the watch for display. This has a couple of benefits in that it takes the processing load off the watch and also, the phone might be placed about one's person so it is less affected by burble. And as per your post, I wonder which has the better barometer...I'd hope the phone does! It also means one has to carry their phone with them which has pros (off landing) and cons (damage to an expensive item/ bulk of carrying it). I suspect technology will move pretty fast with this an may make my version obsolete.
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  8. normiss

    Public Facebook posts are in no way personal correspondence.
    I also don't believe I made a PA in any way.

    I was just responding to the first post. Did I remove any of your posts? B|
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  9. stayhigh

    I expect myself to be banned from this portion of the forum once again for revealing the truth.

    Nope, just banned for doing something again after being told not to.
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  10. http://riverheadnewsreview.timesreview.com/2015/10/68477/skydive-long-island-closes-making-way-for-high-tech-drone-company/


    Those parachuting daredevils hovering over the Long Island Expressway will soon be replaced by high-tech, solar-powered drones.

    Skydive Long Island, which has operated for nearly three decades, has closed for good after its owner sold the Calverton property to a new aerospace company. Ray Maynard, Skydive Long Island’s owner, said he plans to retire due to health reasons, including a case of shingles and a minor stroke, and to spend more time with his family.

    “It was time to retire,” he said. “All of these factors came into play, and the opportunity to sell came up, so it finally happened.”

    Skydive Long Island closed for the season several weeks earlier than typically as Mr. Maynard prepares to hand over the property to Luminati Aerospace LLC.

    He sold his 16.3-acre lot, including a 23,000-square-foot hangar, to the aerospace company, which registered with the New York Department of State in July. This season, Mr. Maynard employed 30 to 35 employees who will now need to seek other jobs, though some of them were seasonal employees.

    A representative for Luminati Aerospace could not be reached for comment.

    During Thursday’s Riverhead Town Board work session, Supervisor Sean Walter said the company will construct large, solar-powered drones that will fly 60,000 feet above the ground while providing communications to satellites and space stations.

    “This is a research and development manufacturing company,” he said. “It will set the stage, in my opinion, for the rest of what happens at EPCAL.”

    Town officials already met with Luminati Aerospace to assure the company that necessary permits could be acquired, Mr. Maynard said. The company will attend next week’s work session to iron out more details on use of the 10,000-foot runway at EPCAL, though they are allowed to use Mr. Maynard’s runway permit temporarily.

    Mr. Maynard said he was pleased that the company is taking over his space, particularly since it will create construction and technology-sector jobs.

    “I don’t think you could have a better fit,” he said. “I think it’s going to be a really big benefit to the Town of Riverhead. The high-tech jobs we’ll have are incredible. The equipment they’re bringing in is the highest-tech stuff in the world.”

    Skydive Long Island first opened in 1986. Mr. Maynard purchased his slice of the EPCAL property in 2000. In its 29 years, his business has served “100,000 or more, maybe 200,000” skydivers, he said.

    “I started up with one airplane and two parachutes,” Mr. Maynard recalled. “It was very humble beginnings. I thought I was going to buy the business and, in five years, be out with all this money. Now, here we are 29 years later.”

    Mr. Maynard was named the News-Review Businessperson of the Year in 2007 for his work in developing his business into a popular destination for all sorts of tourists — and for his commitment to the community through a variety of fundraisers, including one that involved skydivers floating down onto a beach in December during Peconic Bay Medical Center’s “Polar Bear Plunge.”

    “He’s a successful businessman with a heart,” said former councilman Ed Densieski in an article deeming Mr. Maynard Businessperson of the Year. “He’s just a good egg who never toots his own horn. He’s always helping somebody.”

    Last year, a skydiver was killed and an instructor was critically injured in an accident at the Calverton business. Two skydivers were injured last month after they collided in midair.

    Mr. Maynard had planned to build a 44,000-square-foot indoor-skydiving facility next to his hangar. In March 2014, he even received Riverhead Industrial Development Agency tax breaks to do so after substantial public discussion, but he eventually abandoned the project because of its cost.

    In retirement, Mr. Maynard plans to remain a Riverhead resident.

    “I had an incredibly great career as a skydiving instructor and teacher,” he said. “I have nothing but great things to say about this town. I was here since 2000, and the Town of Riverhead has been incredibly supportive of me and my staff.”

    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  11. pchapman

    Either way it was critical that Siebold woke up for a short period of time and thought to release the seatbelt.


    Because he considered this a “high-risk” flight he stated that he took extra precautions and took time to think through scenarios that might happen and how he would rapidly respond in an emergency and activate his parachute and oxygen cylinder. About 10-15 minutes prior to release there was a period of low workload when he was able to physically feel for the parachute D-ring rip cord, oxygen activation pud, and the dual-lever seatbelts to improve his “muscle memory” in the event of an emergency. This was not a written procedure, but something he personally did on some flights.

    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  12. pchapman

    At 50,000' one has about 11% of sea level pressure. Not quite space but not good for breathing. It would be interesting to figure out what kind of freefall time Siebold might have had. Some part might be faster if still strapped in to a seat or other wreckage.

    More detailed account. Seems it was a CYPRES save B|
    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live

  13. http://www.timescall.com/longmont-local-news/ci_28466999/airplane-noise-plaintiffs-file-appeal-longmont-based-suit


    Although Boulder District Court Judge Judith LaBuda wished for both sides to move on, local organization Citizens for Quiet Skies has filed an appeal of its lost lawsuit against Mile-Hi Skydiving.

    Citizens for Quiet Skies, Gunbarrel resident Kimberly Gibbs and the five other original individual plaintiffs filed requests to the Colorado Court of Appeals on Thursday to review the case that was closed in May.

    The plaintiffs sued Mile-Hi Skydiving and its owner, Frank Casares, claiming that Casares was being negligent and a nuisance by flying what they said were unusually loud planes too frequently over homes in southwest Longmont and unincorporated Boulder County.

    LaBuda ruled unilaterally in favor of Mile-Hi, concluding in her judgment that the Federal Aviation Administration rules regarding noise supersede local regulations.

    LaBuda also concluded that Gibbs "is more sensitive to the noise produced by Mile-Hi's operations than the average community member who resides in the (Mile-Hi) flight box."

    LaBuda also wrote in her judgment that while people may find the sounds of motorcycles, trucks, lawn mowers or children's yells irritating, irritating a small group of people is not the same as being annoying enough to register with "a normal person in the community."

    LaBuda expressed her hope that both sides and the community at large would move on after the lawsuit, which included a week-long trial and a site visit to two plaintiff homes while Mile-Hi pilots flew overhead.

    But Gibbs said she found the comments about the children yelling and lawnmowers "insulting" and feels that LaBuda "misapplied the law."

    "From the beginning I had a pretty strong commitment to see this through to the end," Gibbs said.

    LaBuda's order requiring the plaintiffs to pay Mile-Hi $67,000 in damages out of a requested $85,000 was another reason Gibbs wanted to appeal the decision.

    "It really ups the ante for me, because we feel it's a punitive statement and a punitive award ... so for me personally, that's going to fall on my shoulders and that was definitely a strong factor in my decision-making process."

    Casares said in a statement shared via his spokesman, Russ Rizzo: "We are confident in our legal position. Our focus remains on running a successful business that contributes to the local economy while continuing our commitment to being a good neighbor."

    Skydiving Fatalities - Cease not to learn 'til thou cease to live