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$30,000 for Laurel Municipal Airport in secured by Sen. Tester

Thursday, April 30, 2020

With Montana airports struggling to keep up with costs after the COVID-19 pandemic brought air travel to a standstill, U.S. Senator Jon Tester successfully secured $30,000 to help the Laurel Municipal Airport cover operational expenses, staffing, and certain development projects during the crisis.

“Montanans rely on our small community airports to keep our state connected, and the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down traffic almost entirely,” Tester said. “I’m glad to have helped secure this funding at a critical time—it’ll help the Laurel Municipal Airport keep up with their day-to-day operations so that when this crisis is over, they can continue serving their community and driving our economy.”

Montana airports have seen an 80 percent drop in passengers since the COVID-19 pandemic forced the vast majority of Americans to shelter-inplace. In addition, airports are facing new demands on operations, doubt about their ability to retain staff, increased pressure to reduce costs, and uncertainties about their ability to pay down debt obligations or complete projects.

Tester successfully got this funding included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act after he pressured the Trump Administration to ensure rural airports did not get left behind in any COVID-19 relief packages. Tester secured nearly $74 million in funding for 70 other airports across Montana, which can be used for any purpose that airport revenue may legally be used, including operational expenses and certain development projects.


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