Airport Funding Bill Advances in Oklahoma Legislature

April 20, 2007
Funding proposal for regional airport needs makes it through the state Senate with unanimous support

A proposal to provide funding for regional airport needs made its way through the state Senate on Tuesday with unanimous support.

House Bill 2082 proposes to have the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission award up to $40 million in grants for improvements at regional airports. State Sen. David Myers, R-Ponca City, said he was authoring the bill as a way to shore up some obvious shortcomings at airports throughout Oklahoma.

Myers discussed a recent trip he took to the Durant airport in which he realized that the buildings were substandard, especially when considering the recent economic development that had taken place in the southeastern Oklahoma municipality. He said the terminal building was in poor condition when compared to the high-dollar corporate jets that were flying into the airport.

"They get off and go into a tin building to go to the bathroom," Myers said. "They are not conducive of the same things they are doing in that area. "

Myers said some federal funds were available for the regional airports but that the money couldn't be used to upgrade facilities such as hangars and terminals.

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