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Bama Air, one of the Tuscaloosa Regional Airport’s two fixed-based operators and a fixture of the facility for more than 30 years, has been sold.

Now, its facility is managed, owned and operated by Hawthorne Global Aviation Services, a provider of fixed-base operation services since 1932.

Fixed-base operators, or FBOs, provide a number of services for incoming and departing flights, from fueling and hangar services to lounges and convenience services.

They’re like fancy gas stations for the aircraft industry.

“We are continuing to expand our FBO network and Hawthorne Tuscaloosa broadens our U.S. geographic footprint,” said Bryon Burbage, president and CEO of Hawthorne Global Aviation Services, in a news release announcing the acquisition. “This location is a full-service FBO with a wide range of amenities, including aircraft management and aircraft maintenance along with warm hospitality you’d expect from any of the five Hawthorne FBOs nationwide.

“We are very pleased to be a part of the Tuscaloosa community and look forward to a long and productive relationship with the airport and the city.”

Hawthorne, headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina, began efforts months ago to acquire the more than 75,000 square feet of hangar space and a 5,000 square-foot passenger terminal that, until between 1995 and Monday, was operated by Bama Air.

It now features a spacious lobby complete with fireplace, a wall mounted widescreen television, wireless Internet access, meeting room facilities and flight planning as part of the $150,000 or so in upgrades that Burbage told the Tuscaloosa City Council the company would be investing.

The Tuscaloosa City Council granted approval of the sale of the terminal and its leasing agreement from Bama Air to Hawthorne in September. The council’s approval was required by city code, since the airport is a city-owned facility.

Before the sale could be completed, the site underwent an appraisal and valuation process to determine the new lease rate.

NexPhase Capital and Hawthorne Corp. formed Hawthorne in 2010 to pursue an FBO acquisition strategy. NPC provides the company with strategic advice.

Hawthorne Tuscaloosa adds to the Hawthorne network that now includes FBOs at Long Island MacArthur Airport in Islip, New York; Cobb County International Airport in Atlanta; Chicago Executive Airport in Chicago; and Chippewa Valley Regional Airport in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

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$400.00 Usage fee per International flight requiring US CBP clearance during the hours 10:00 AM ET to 7 PM ET Thursday through Monday (closed Tuesday and Wednesday). Additional charges TBD may be applied for after hours call outs.

$200.00 Regulated garbage (includes first two bags)

$ 30.00 per bag Regulated garbage 3 bags and up

$ 25.00 per flight requiring dish sanitization

$360.00 Per flight fee for Pre payment of 10 or more flights to be used within an 18 month period.

US Customs and Border Protection requires 2 hours advance notice prior to the arrival of any International Flight that requires CBP services at KRYY:

CBP KRYY 770-422-3553 Tel
CBP KRYY 770-422-3550 Fax
CBP KATL 404-765-2248 Tel (24 hrs.)

If requesting an Overflight Exemption at Hartsfield Jackson ATL International Airport, Ga. An e-mail is sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the following information:

Aircraft N Number:
Aircraft Type:
Color Scheme of Aircraft:

Pilot’s full Name:
Date of Birth:

Crew full Name:
Date of Birth:

Name of Company/Owner:
Company Address:
Point of Contact:
Phone e-mail

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Beechcraft Premier I N719D was the first aircraft to use the new U.S. Customs facility at Cobb County International Airport. The twinjet flew to the Atlanta-area airport directly from Lynden Pindling International Airport in Nassau on June 25, the day the Customs facility opened. (Photo: Hawthorne Global)

Cobb County International Airport-McCollum Field on June 25, 2015 became the first Atlanta metro-area general aviation airport to offer on-site U.S. Customs services with full staffing, according to Hawthorne Global, the sole FBO provider at the field. “Travelers to our Atlanta FBO now have easy access to U.S. Customs, making it an international destination for private jet travelers,” said Hawthorne Global president Bryon Burbage.

A Beechcraft Premier I was the first aircraft to use the Customs facility, flying directly from Lynden Pindling International Airport in Nassau, according to FlightAware. The Customs office is located near Hawthorne’s south terminal at the airport. In addition to on-site Customs, the Hawthorne Atlanta FBO has more than 500,000 sq ft of hangar space and a 6,000-sq-ft passenger terminal on the north side of the field.

McCollum Field is the second busiest general aviation airport in Georgia and offers the longest general aviation runway—6,295-foot Runway 9/27—in the Atlanta area. Recent airport improvements include repaved taxiways and a new control tower.

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Cobb County International Airport hosted a networking and static jet display event Wednesday.

Karl Von Hagel, airport manager, said the event was a way of showing off recent improvements to the airport and having aircraft brought in by manufacturers to be viewed. “It’s like a car show for aircraft,” Von Hagel said.

Improvements to the airport include the addition of a U.S. customs facility in June 2015, a new air traffic control tower in March 2015 and a 6,300-foot runway. The runway is the longest general aviation runway in metro Atlanta.

Ninety percent of the funds for the improvements came from the Federal Aviation Administration, 5 percent from state funds and 5 percent from airport funds, according to Von Hagel.

Clark Hungerford, who serves on the 11-member Airport Advisory Board, said “all in all, (the improvements) are a good investment.”

With the new Braves stadium and new businesses in the Cobb Galleria, Hungerford noted that more people can fly into the airport for business.

The airport was in conjunction with the Georgia Business Aviation Association to plan the event.

David Small, past president of GBAA, a nonprofit organization that promotes business aviation, said GBAA sees the summer networking series as a good place to get dialog and feedback. This is the first event of the year, but Small said they plan to have five or six more in addition to their big fundraising event in May.

Another partner at the event was Hawthorne Global Aviation Services, which joined the Cobb airport in July 2014. The company leases from Cobb airport as an aviation services company dealing directly with aircraft management.

David Kucko, general manager of Hawthorne Global at the Cobb location, said that with the recent improvements, “the whole year has been good.”

Hawthorn Global paid for the customs building at the airport and they continue to pay for its business. “We are doing what we can to up the ability for international flights in and out of here,” Kucko said.

Cobb County airport is the only metro-Atlanta general aviation airport to offer an on-site U.S Customs facility.

The airport was required to construct a customs building to minimum requirements and hire a Customs Border Protection employee for 40 hours a week to staff the building. The building has a waiting area, inspection and search capabilities, an interview room and a jail holding cell. Additionally, it’s equipped with blast-proof windows and a quarantine section.

“We are very proud of our U.S. Customs Facility and we worked very hard with CBP to assure that our facility met or exceeded the minimum standards required by CBP for international inspections facilities before we allowed the arrival of any international flights into Cobb County,” Von Hagel said.

Other local airports, such as Fulton County, still allow for an employee from CBP to come directly to the tarmac from Hartsfield Jackson Airport to check the people entering the country. Even with the new rule stated by U.S. CBP that airports adding a customs facility must include a building that meet minimum requirements and features, airports such as Fulton County and Dekalb County have not had to change their system.

However, for Cobb airport, the addition of the facility “brings in a lot of business to the airport and the area,” according to Kucko.

During the Wednesday networking event, three jets were on static display.

The Gulfstream G550, which sells for $50 to $55 million, was the biggest of the three. Nicolas Rose, demonstration captain with Gulfstream, said the event is a time for the manufacturers to come socialize and show the plane.

“We have costumers on the field, so we network with them and make sure everything is good with their product,” Rose said.

Jeff Michael, East Coast representative for the Learjet 75, another plane on display, said they use these events to showcase their product.

“We try and schedule buyers to come,” Michael said.

The third plane on the tarmac was the Legacy 450 manufactured by Embraer.

Von Hagel estimated 300 people were in attendance at the networking event.

More information
$4.9M in airport upgrades planned
$4.9M in airport upgrades planned

About $4.9 million worth of upgrades and maintenance are in the works for the Cobb County International Airport, a project that county officia…
Cobb County International Airport projects earn approval from county
Cobb County International Airport projects earn approval from county

Safety and efficiency improvements are among the goals behind two projects expected to get underway in July at the Cobb County International A…
Cobb County plans $4.9 million in airport upgrades
Cobb County plans $4.9 million in airport upgrades

About $4.9 million worth of upgrades and maintenance are in the works for the Cobb County International Airport, a project that county officia…

Cobb Cobb County International Airport Networking Event Federal Aviation Administration Airport Advisory Board Georgia Business Aviation Association

Information: Claire Harper Marietta Daily Jounal

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Beginning June 25, the county airport name will change to Cobb County International Airport McCollum Field, signaling that customs inspections services are available for international traffic.

The new U.S. Customs and Border Protection Facility will be open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays through Mondays at the airport, 1723 McCollum Parkway NW, Kennesaw.

U.S. Customs also will arrange to provide after-hour inspections and assist pilots in requesting overflight exemptions.



Cobb County International Airport - McCollum Field

Cobb County International Airport

McCollum Field is owned by Cobb County, operated by the County Department of Transportation characterizing it as a municipal airport. It is managed by a full-time, professional airport manager. The airport employs almost 185 people, and had an annual economic impact of more than $47 million to the local economy in 2002.

1723 McCollum Pkwy NW, Kennesaw, GA 30144