At the regularly scheduled meeting on Feb 13, Houston City Council unanimously approved modifications to the Memorandum of Understanding with Southwest Airlines approved May 30, 2012. The most notable change in the agreement is the cost, generated in part by the addition of 6 more security lines (increasing from 8 to 14). features that will be improvements on the original plans. Southwest now estimates the expansion will cost $150 million, some $50 million more than previously proposed.
Because all the costs of the expansion will be born by Southwest, there will be no additional burden on Houston taxpayers. Building costs will be included in the tax credit arrangements that will become applicable after the international terminal is open and operating.
District Councilman James Rodriguez (District I which includes Hobby Airport) haled the agreement as a potential revenue source of $1.25 million to the City over the lease term.
The modifications were included as item 23 on the February 13 docket. The 3-page Request for Action from Houston Airport System Aviation Director Mario Diaz specifying the modifications appears as pages 129-131 in the Agenda Backup.