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Regional airports receive grants

Staff Report

The Fallon Municipal Airport has received a $30,000 grant to help respond to the COVID-19 public health emergency.

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announced the award last week.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration will award $231,448,014 in airport aid to 30 airports in Nevada.

The Hawthorne and Lovelock airports each received a $20,000 grant. The Silver Springs Airport also received $30,000.

The funding is part of the Trump administration’s Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Airport Grant Program, an effort to provide relief to American families, workers, and businesses.

This act includes $10 billion in funds to be awarded as economic relief to eligible U.S. airports affected by the prevention of, preparation for and response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The city of Fallon said it’s studying some of the requirements of the act and is waiting on further guidance.

The CARES Act provides funds to increase the federal share to 100 percent for Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and supplemental discretionary grants already planned for fiscal year 2020. Under normal circumstances, AIP grant recipients contribute a matching percentage of the project costs. Providing this additional funding and eliminating the local share will allow critical safety and capacity projects to continue as planned regardless of airport sponsors’ current financial circumstances.

Additionally, the CARES Act provides new funds distributed by various formulas for all airports that are part of the national airport system. This includes all commercial service airports, all reliever airports and some public-owned general aviation airports.

Primary commercial service airports, with more than 10,000 annual passenger boardings, will receive additional funds based on the number of annual boardings, in a similar way to how they currently receive AIP entitlement funds.

All commercial service airports will receive funds based on the number of passengers that board aircraft there, the amount of debt an airport has, and the amount of money the airport has in reserve.

General aviation airports will receive funds based on their airport categories, such as National, Regional, Local, Basic and Unclassified.

The Department of Transportation said it will provide additional guidance either this week or next.