Thursday, May 18, 2023


WASHINGTON (KTVZ ) — Sens. Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, D-Ore., announced Thursday that the Federal Aviation Administration is awarding six airports across the state — including Madras and Prineville — nearly $3.5 million under the Airport Improvement Program.

“Oregonians across the state and industries rely on air travel for many reasons, whether it’s for recreation, support for firefighting, or to transport goods,” Merkley said. “This federal funding will help ensure Oregon’s regional airports are able to ensure safe travels for Oregonians and visitors alike as they fly throughout the state.”

“These federal investments in the safety and efficiency of rural Oregon airports generate good-paying jobs and help to protect communities needing reliable air options for fighting wildfires, delivering medicines, providing emergency transport and more,” Wyden said. “I’m gratified these funds are en route to our state and will keep battling for similar infrastructure resources throughout Oregon.”

The AIP grant program funds airport infrastructure projects like runways, taxiways, airport signage, airport lighting, and airport markings in an effort to strengthen our nation’s aviation infrastructure. These awards will go toward pavement, runway, and taxiway improvements, and safety area construction.

The Oregon awards include:

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  • Madras Municipal: $955,040
  • Florence Municipal: $921,947
  • Southwest Oregon Regional: $500,000
  • La Grande/Union County: $450,000
  • Prineville: $450,000
  • Scappoose $160,000

Madras Airport Manager Derek Ables told NewsChannel 21, “We will be using the funding for apron reconstruction in front of the general aviation building. The pavement has reached the end of its useful life. It will also be used for some much-needed fencing.  We are excited about these projects and the future of Madras Municipal Airport. “

Prineville Airport Manager Kelly Coffelt said, “Crook County, the Airport owner, along with the City of Prineville Airport operations management continue to work with the FAA to support our airports growth.

“The AIP program funds for the Prineville/Crook County Airport will fund engineering and design for runway reconstruction this year, the $450,000 grant along with the Crook County and the City of Prineville contributing approximately $50,000 to the project.

“Looking forward this work,” Coffelt said, as it “supports a much larger $4.5 million runway reconstruction project that will take place the latter part of 2024.”