Brookhaven’s airport getting more than $472K in FAA grants

Published 12:00 pm Friday, April 21, 2023

Friday, Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), of Brookhaven, and Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) announced more than $35 million in Federal Aviation Administration grants for airport improvements throughout Mississippi. This includes two grants totaling more than $472,000 for the Brookhaven-Lincoln County Airport.

The 39 grants were made through the long-running Airport Improvement Program and the newer Airport Improvement Grant program.

Local engineer Ryan Holmes works with both the city and the county on multiple projects, including the airport.

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“The main benefit of the grant is to improve safety,” Holmes said. “We’ve got a lot of obstructions, mainly trees, getting in the way of approach and takeoff, on both ends of the runways. We’ve got a lot of trees to remove for safety.”

“We’re also going to make an addition to an apron out there to aid better movement of aircraft around the airport,” said Holmes.

Failure to address the issues would potentially cause traffic in and out of the airport to be reduced, negatively impacting the local economy, Holmes said.

The Brookhaven-Lincoln County Airport will receive a $168,586 AIP grant to mark obstructions, improve lighting, and remove non-hazardous obstructions. The airport will also receive an AIG grant in the amount of $304,000 for expanding the existing north general aviation apron by 2,500 square yards.

“This is part of the long-range plan we have to improve the airport,” said Mayor Joe Cox. “We appreciate the funding from our senators and we’ll put it to good use there. It’s one more tool we have for economic development.”

“These grants are direct investments in safety and economic development in Mississippi,” Wicker said. “I have been a strong supporter of infrastructure, especially for airports, because they are a critical component of our economy. This funding will help airports across our state make the improvements they need to keep contributing and protect the flying public.”

“The importance of local airports to the overall vitality and growth of communities cannot be overstated,” said Hyde-Smith, ranking member of the Senate Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Subcommittee. “These FAA awards will support important projects and upgrades to improve safety and efficiency at airports across Mississippi.”

The 22 AIP grants totaling $24.99 million and 17 AIG grants totalling $10.2 million will benefit other Mississippi airports including the Hardy-Anders Field/Natchez-Adams County and Vicksburg Municipal airports.