Sloulin Field International Airport in Williston was one of 11 airports in western North Dakota awarded a state grant Thursday from the Board of University and School Lands in its first round of grants to airports impacted by rapid development in the state’s oil and gas counties.
The $117,032 grant will be used to update the airport’s General Primary Guiding Documents, which include minimum standards, airport transition policy and rates and charges plan. Airport Manager Steven Kjegaard said the current documents haven’t been updated since the 1980s. The Airline and Rental Car Agreement Documents will also be updated as the leases are out of date. The total project cost is $234,063.65.
The documents are needed to help address the airport’s future growth and development.
“They’re documents we need in order to run an airport correctly,” Kjegaard said.
The other airports slated to benefit from the more than $27 million awarded in Energy Impact Grants include: Bowman, Dickinson, Crosby, Kenmare, Killdeer, New Town, Stanley, Tioga, Mohall and Minot. The funding will be used for construction and reconstruction of facilities, runways, taxiways and other maintenance needs. Each project requires a local-federal cost share and state grants will only be distributed when the other funding has been secured.
“Airports in western North Dakota are experiencing record increases in boardings and activity, requiring additional investment in new and expanded terminals, runways and other maintenance needs,” said Gov. Jack Dalrymple in a prepared statement. “These state grants will help airports in our oil and gas counties address the impacts of rapid growth and enhance air travel opportunities for our citizens.”
Dalrymple is the chairman of the Board of University and School Lands.
To date, including the grants awarded Thursday, the Land Board has committed more than $147 million in state Energy Impact Grant funds and will award a total of $240 million in grants during the 2013-15 biennium.
The grants will be used for a range of needs such as upgrades to county and city infrastructure enhancement for law enforcements agencies and emergency services and support for schools.
It will help quite a bit,” Kjegaard said. “It’ll allow us as we move forward with the relocation or expansion to be an airport that’s self-sustaining. The crux of it is it helps us become a sustainable airport without having to draw on taxpayer dollars.”