CTX regional airports receive funding for improvements - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |

CTX regional airports receive funding for improvements

(Source: KXXV) (Source: KXXV)
CENTRAL TEXAS (KXXV) -

Two local, regional airports are receiving significant financial help worth hundreds of thousands of dollars from TxDOT. 

The McGregor Executive Airport received over $300,000, and the Draughon-Miller Airport in Temple received over $150,000. 

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) works with TxDOT to provide financial assistance to about 275 regional airports so they can continue to make necessary adjustments.  

"The airport is just a very important economic tool for the city. A lot of times we're the first impression of the city," Sharon Rostovich, the Draughon-Miller Airport Director, said. 

A first impression that needs to be kept up, so... 

"We work with those airports to develop their projects to make sure they are developed to the highest level in order to get them the funding that they need to make improvements to their airport facilities," Mark Cross, a TxDOT Information Specialist, said. 

Improvements that range anywhere from the construction or improvement of buildings, to pavement, sensing or lighting.

"This is where usually the planes come in and they depart using this facility, so what we had problems with is the tar coming up out of the asphalt and cracking. We're gonna be doing an overlay out here on the south part of the apron," Rob Blanchard, the City of McGregor Airport Manager, said. 

"We're going to improve the apron and the drainage so that more hangers can be built in this location," Rostovich added.  

"It is appropriated from the federal government. It is to be used, funneled through us, to these smaller airports for these purposes only," Cross added. 

Those purposes help regional airports be able to serve the flying community... including military operations, visiting businesses, medical flights and agricultural needs.  

"Every time we are awarded another grant, that's just more improvements, maintenance for our airport and it also takes away some of the financial responsibility off the city," Rostovich said. 

"I've been here since 2000, and we've gotten over $7 million since then," Blanchard added. 

Texas regional airports can apply for the FAA grants as frequently as they'd like. TxDOT approves grants monthly.

TxDOT plans to grant approximately $60 million to Texas regional airports this year. 

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