June 06, 2014

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce Finger Lakes Airports To Receive Over $1.8 Million In DOT Funding For Infrastructure, Safety Improvements

Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced that three Finger Lakes region airports will receive approximately $1.8 million in total funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for airport infrastructure and facility upgrades. Specifically, Penn Yan Airport in Yates County will receive $201,330 to conduct an airport pavement study for infrastructure upgrades and $198,000 for the purchase of snow removal equipment. Dansville Airport in Livingston County will receive $1,077,300 for runway, taxiway, and terminal apron rehabilitation as well as $36,000 to buy the rights over surrounding properties in order to trim trees to make take-off and landing easier to navigate. Canandaigua Airport in Ontario County will receive $292,500 for snow removal equipment to keep the runway clear and safe for flight during winter months.

"It is never too early to start planning for winter in Upstate New York, when our airports need the right snow removal equipment to keep their runways safe and clear for takeoff. So it’s great news that our local Finger Lakes airports will be receiving the funding they need for necessary infrastructure and safety upgrades,” said Schumer. “Keeping our airports safe and efficient for tourists and business travelers are top priorities, and consistently keeping them in top shape will allow these airports to continue to serve as major economic drivers for the entire Finger Lakes region.”

 “These are critical investments for our Finger Lakes airports,” Gillibrand said. “Updating the airports’ infrastructure and safety measures will help provide better, safer service for travelers and business, and strengthen the local economy by creating better access to the beauty of the Finger Lakes.”

“The new piece of Snow Removal Equipment will provide for a more efficient and timely removal of snow at Canandaigua Airport. With the recent extension and widening of Runway 13-31, as well as the extension of Taxiway A, this additional piece of equipment is necessary to ensure Canandaigua Airport remains operational during the winter months,” said Michael Wojcik, Senior Fiscal Manager for Ontario County.  “This will be a great asset to service the people of Ontario and surrounding counties.”

The funding for the three airports is part of the Airport Improvement Program, administered by DOT’s Federal Aviation Administration. The Airport Improvement Program provides grants to public agencies for the planning and development of public-use airports that are included in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS).

The Airport Improvement Program (AIP) was established by the Airport and Airway Improvement Act of 1982. Since then, the AIP has been amended several times, most recently with the passage of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012. Funds obligated for the AIP are drawn from the Airport and Airway Trust fund, which is supported by user fees, fuel taxes, and other similar revenue sources.