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"Washington state aviation associations host Airport Funding Day"



Monday, February 3, 2014

Washington aviation associations host Airport Funding Day
By Nisha Marvel
WSDOT Aviation Communications
 

Aviation advocates gathered in Olympia on Jan. 28 to participate in the
second annual Airport Funding Day. The Washington State Community Airports
Association and Washington Airport Management Association hosted the event
to increase awareness for legislators, legislative staff, committee staff
and the governor's staff about the funding needs at the state's 134 public
airports. 

The Washington State Department of Transportation's Aviation division
assisted with the event, providing information on the state's airport
funding sources and needs, particularly regarding airport pavements and its
airport grant program. Some of the information provided by WSDOT included: 

A 2012 Washington airport pavement study that shows pavement conditions at
many airports are deteriorating. 

By 2020, at current funding levels, the backlog of airport pavement work is
estimated at $257 million (an 18 percent increase). 

During the most recent airport grant cycle, WSDOT received over $3 million
in grant requests from 44 airports. 

Because of a temporary increase in state funding levels (typically $1
million annually), in 2013 WSDOT awarded $2 million to 33 airports that
helped fund 55 different airport projects. 

"Airports have a huge impact on our state's economy, transportation system,
safety and quality of life," said WSDOT Aviation Director Tristan Atkins.
"Airport Funding Day was a great example of how aviation associations can
come together to increase awareness about our state's aviation funding
needs." 

About 85 people participated in the funding day, which took place from 9
a.m. to 4 p.m. at the John A. Cherberg Building. 

Just before the event, WSDOT provided a briefing at the first Aviation
Caucus of the 2014 legislative session, hosted by Sen. Jim Honeyford and
Rep. Gael Tarleton. At that meeting Atkins and WSDOT Senior Aviation Planner
Rob Hodgman provided the group with information on the current Airport
Investment Study and the Governor's proposed 2014 supplemental budget. 

Legislators in attendance included:

Rep. Leonard Christian
Rep. Dick Muri
Rep. Mark Hargrove
Rep. Drew MacEwen
Sen. Brian Blake
Rep. Liz Pike
Rep. Ed Orcutt
Rep. Norm Johnson
Rep. Brad Klippert
Rep. Bruce Chandler
Sen. Steve Hobbs
Rep. Dean Takko
Sen. Jim Honeyford
Rep. Gael Tarleton

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