The Texas airport system is one of the largest in the country, and has 264 general aviation airports, like the Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport in Temple, throughout the state.
These general aviation airports may be small but they make a significant impact on the local and state economy. General aviation airports stimulate their surrounding local economies, provide jobs, service commercial airlines, and their transportation services support an assortment of local and national businesses.
Texas airports provide an estimated 778,955 jobs to the state and these workers generate about $94.3 billion in economic output, according a study from the Texas Department of Transportation’s Aviation Division.
Regional airports like the Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport are well supported by the local community, according to the Texas Department of Transportation’s Aviation Division; the Temple airport assists with numerous community services like medical transport operations with the Baylor Scott & White Memorial Hospital, as well as a role in Fort Hood military training and exercises, due to it's placement in the Central Texas region.
The Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport is also part of the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems, this means the airport is among the aviation airports that receive federal Airport Improvement Program grants.
This year the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) awarded over $845 million for projects that address environmental impacts, increase accessibility, and expand capacity at airports like the Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport, according to a recent FAA release. The Texas State Block Grant Program received $34,776,887 in funding.
“We don’t want to just build our airports back to the way things were before the pandemic," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. "We want our airports to be better than ever–accessible to all, delivering maximum benefit to their communities, and helping directly and indirectly create jobs for millions of Americans."