Thursday, March 3, 2016

Airport funding

The Colorado Aeronautical Board (CAB) has approved this year’s airport grant funding for Colorado airports.

The unanimous decision authorized the distribution of $2.7 million in state aviation fuel tax revenues through grants to 27 Colorado public use airports under the Aviation Discretionary Grant Program administered by Colorado Department of Transportation’s Division of Aeronautics.

The grants ranged in size from $8,333 to $250,000.  They represent State of Colorado participation in a wide variety of projects, totaling $71.7 million, to improve safety and infrastructure at airports all across the state.  Airport projects must include local and/or federal fund participation in order to receive Colorado discretionary aviation grants.

“I am pleased to approve these grants and to see that we are continuing statewide efforts to upgrade our airports,” said CAB Chairman Ray Beck.  “The economic multipliers provided by our airports through the moving of people, goods, and services are tremendous.  CDOT’s vision is to help develop and maintain an efficient transportation system, and this grant program certainly helps put that vision into practice.  This is an excellent partnership.” 

A 2013 Economic Impact Study of Colorado Airports showed that the airports support 265,700 jobs statewide and create a total economic output of $37.6 billion annually.

“Despite available funding for airports due to declining oil prices, Colorado was still able to come through to help fund several outstanding and critical projects that continue to make the Colorado Airport System one of the best in the country,” said Aeronautics Division Director David Ulane.  “We are always looking for ways to be a strong partner with our public use airports across Colorado, and this grant program is one of several ways we are able to do exactly that.”

Colorado legislation was created 1991 to develop and maintain the Colorado Aviation System through taxes collected on aviation fuel sold within the state. There are no general funds used to meet the needs within the Colorado Aviation System, the needs are funded solely through the taxes collected by those actually using the aviation system.

Grant application received from Colorado public use airports are evaluated by CDOT Division of Aeronautics staff and approved by the Colorado Aeronautical Board.  The Governor then reviews the grant applications and issues the final go-ahead.

The Colorado Airport System consists of 74 public use airports that support over 265,000 jobs, provide $12.6 billion in annual payroll, and $36.7 billion in total annual economic output for the State of Colorado.

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