The Western News: Libby, Eureka airports to receive federal funds from infrastructure bill

by Derrick Perkins

Two Lincoln County airports are slated to receive an influx of money from the massive infrastructure bill signed into law by President Joe Biden last month.

The Libby and Eureka airports are set to get $159,000 each through the $1.2 trillion spending package, announced U.S. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) in a statement. In all, Tester, a Democrat, said the bill would send about $28.6 million to airports across the state in Fiscal Year 2022.

“Montana’s airports are essential to keeping our state connected and our economy strong,” said Tester in a statement. “This funding from my bipartisan infrastructure package will ensure that our airports can make urgently needed repairs, continue to grow and support Montana travel and create good paying jobs in the process.”

Over the next five years, the legislation sets aside $144 million in funding for airports in Montana. Officials will award the dollars through airport improvement grants via the Federal Aviation Administration.

Tester played an integral role in negotiating passage of the infrastructure bill. He joined Biden in the White House for the signing of the legislation last month, telling reporters that infrastructure spending represented a critical investment in infrastructure and education.

As well as the airport funding, Tester secured $2.82 billion for roads, highways and bridges in Montana, $1 billion for rural water projects and $42.45 billion for broadband development across the country and $3.37 billion for wildfire risk reduction efforts.