March 19, 2024

Senate Bill 144 Allocates $10 Million to Support Vital Airport Terminal Construction Projects

Senate Bill 144 Allocates $10 Million to Support Vital Airport Terminal Construction Projects in South Dakota


RAPID CITY, S.D. (03/19/2024) Senate Bill 144 appropriated $10 million to support terminals at public airports, marking a significant milestone in improving airport infrastructure and ensuring safer and more efficient air travel for both residents and visitors.

South Dakota's aviation sector has long grappled with the lowest federal funding allocation in the Great Lakes Region. Despite a consistent $3.2 billion federal fund allocation divided nationwide, inflation has eroded the effectiveness of these funds in meeting airport infrastructure demands. Additionally, during major terminal renovations, including those at the state’s two largest airports, portions of the facilities are ineligible for federal funding.

"It is important that our Airports grow with the growth of the State, and project funding assistance may be needed from time to time when we need to make larger infrastructure advances; this is one of the times”, said Rapid City Regional Airport Executive Director Patrick Dame. "We extend our sincerest thanks to Senator David Johnson, Senator Jack Kolbeck, Representative Steve Duffy, and others for their tireless advocacy and vision in championing this critical bill.”

Senate Bill 144 was signed by Governor Kristi Noem last week and signifies a stride in fortifying the state's aviation infrastructure, ensuring continued growth and prosperity for years to come.

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