U.S. Congressman Lloyd Dogget.
U.S. Congressman Lloyd Doggett announced this week that the U.S. House of Representatives was expected to approve $2.85 million in federal funding for the San Marcos Municipal Airport.
The money would go some way towards helping San Marcos Municipal Airport Manager Scott Gallagher raise the $13 million he needs to build a traffic control tower and a facility on the airport’s north side that can provide services for executive flyers, including private hangars and conference rooms.
“In turbulent economic times, I am pleased to help bring this funding in for a landing,” said Doggett (D-Austin), a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee and House Budget Committee. “This appropriation builds on prior federal assistance to ensure a better, safer airport that will continue to attract new businesses to our community. It means construction jobs this year and a multiplier effect that will create other jobs in San Marcos at a tough period when we especially need them.”
At a San Marcos Area Chamber of Commerce breakfast in December, Gallagher said the airport is poised to take another step, due to its popularity with executive travellers who find it easier to use than facilities in Austin and San Antonio.
“Executives fly in and out of our airport for a reason,” Gallagher said. “They can get in and out.”
Soon after he became the airport manager in July 2008, Gallagher began campaigning for a control tower.
“If we have a tower at our airport, it opens a lot of possibilities for people flying in and out,” Gallagher said. “… Some businesses don’t let people fly to uncontrolled airports.”
In 2008, the airport resurfaced its north-south runway for $1 million and spent another $1.275 million for a concrete apron rehabilitation to improve parking and tie-down space.
Gallagher told the chamber that he can receive 90-10 matching funds from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), meaning the state will fund the airport $9 for every dollar he raises.
The federal funding in the house bill would flow through the Federal Aviation Administration. The U.S, Senate is expected to consider the same bill next week. If it passes through the Senate, it is expected that President Barack Obama will sign the bill in March.
Doggett also announced that San Marcos will receive an additional $143,000 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) federal dollars from the recently approved Economic Recovery Law.
“This is in addition to about $500,000 in CDBG funds that San Marcos already received last fall and at least a similar amount that it should receive again this fall.” Doggett said. “It is an investment in support of decision-making by local officials to meet important local needs,”
Among other uses, the City of San Marcos has previously allocated CDBG dollars to Habitat for Humanity and the Family Justice Center at The Village.Email | Print