After cost dispute, Jackson Hole Airport will no longer provide its own security
JACKSON (WNE) — Starting April 1, the Jackson Hole Airport will no longer provide its own security screening services.
The Transportation Security Administration announced Wednesday that it selected a private company, Aviation Security Management, LLC, to take the contract.
The TSA said it was only willing to pay $33 million over a five-year period for security screening. But the airport asked for the federal government to pay it more, arguing that $33 million was not enough to retain employees in Jackson’s tight housing and labor market.
The TSA is currently paying about $10.4 million for a security contract extension that only covers 10 months. Over five years, that would equate to more than $52 million. The Airport did not disclose what it asked for.
“Our efforts to renew the contract have been exhausted and we sincerely hope ASM recognizes the labor force challenges in this area and will be able to support their staff to the best of their ability while providing the same quality of service,” Bob McLaurin, the Jackson Hole Airport Board’s president said in a Wednesday press release.
On Friday, Jackson Hole Airport Executive Director Jim Elwood told the News&Guide that employees will likely leave if they’re paid less than what they currently make.
Amid Jackson Hole’s tight labor market, the airport has attracted and retained security screeners with a base wage of $25 per hour. Benefits also include employer paid health and dental plans, a $1,000 monthly housing and transportation stipend, a state-run retirement plan, and paid sick and vacation time.
Aviation Security Management, LLC, provides security services at other airports in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, including Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport.