Easterwood Airport is set to receive more than $1.4 million in relief funding from President Trump's Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Airport Grant Program.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao announced Tuesday the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration will award more than $811.5 million in airport aid to 210 airports in Texas to help respond to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Across the United States, $10 billion will be distributed to airports under the CARES Act Airport Grant Program.
Easterwood Airport will receive $1.4 million as part of the relief funding, the 20th-highest relief package among Texas airports. Bryan's Coulter Field will receive $30,000.
"The CARES Act funding really helps ensure that Easterwood Airport has necessary resources to continue to operate at the highest level and provide that critical infrastructure to the surrounding community," said Kevin Davis, director of Easterwood Airport.
Transportation Security Administration checkpoint throughput travel numbers show only 102,184 total travelers went through airport checkpoints across the United States on Monday, compared to 2,484,580 travelers that went through TSA checkpoints on the same day in 2019.
This funding is to replace airports' lost revenue due to a sharp decline in passenger travel and support continuing operations. These funds can be used for airport capital expenditures, airport operating expenses including payroll and utilities and airport debt payments.
"This $10 billion in emergency resources will help fund the continued operations of our nation’s airports during this crisis and save workers’ jobs,” Chao said in a release.
The FAA said it will use a streamlined application and grant-agreement process to make funding immediately available for critical airport needs. The funds will be available as soon as airport sponsors execute a grant agreement.
"The FAA is still generating a lot of guidance on that," Davis said. "Everyone still has a lot of questions, so at this point, we're still waiting for additional guidance. It keeps changing day by day."
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