U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $724,514 in federal funding for critical infrastructure projects at two airports in the Southern Tier. The funding was allocated through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Program. Specifically, the Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport in Tompkins County will receive $136,800 to replace a worn down friction measuring device and carrier vehicle. This equipment will allow the airport to report accurate pavement data in order to enhance safety and efficiency. The Wellsville Municipal Airport/Tarantine Field Airport in Allegany County will receive $587,714 to fund the final phase of a project to remove terrain obstructions from the runway approach.
“Keeping our airports in up-to-date is crucial to attracting business and tourism in Ithaca and Wellsville,” said Senator Schumer. “These federal funds will allow airports across the Southern Tier to make critical infrastructure upgrades that will enable safer, more efficient service for the passengers and pilots who fly in and out of the region every day.”
“Investing in our airport infrastructure enables safer, more efficient service for the businesses and travelers who utilize it every day,” said Senator Gillibrand. “These funds through the Department of Transportation are a major investment for several airports in the Southern Tier to renovate and upgrade their facilities. I will continue to push for resources that enhance efficiency and public safety at our airports.”
“For those of us who live in the northeast, friction measuring equipment is very important to have during winter operations. This equipment allows us to test the slipperiness of the runway and taxiways to determine that there is enough friction for safe landing. We are glad we will have these funds to replace our aging equipment and thank Senator Schumer and Senator Gillibrand for advocating on our behalf,” said Mike Hall, Ithaca-Tomkins Regional Airport Manager.
This funding is awarded through the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and is administered by DOT’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). 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). 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.