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HomeNewsArchivesVIPA Receives $10.6 Million in Grants for Work at Territory's Airports

VIPA Receives $10.6 Million in Grants for Work at Territory's Airports

The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued two grants totaling $10.6 million to the Virgin Islands Port Authority to assist the agency with major repairs at the territory’s airports, VIPA announced in a news release Thursday.

VIPA received a $4.8 million Airport Improvement Program grant for work at the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix. Of the total grant, $1.7 million is entitlement funds, and $3,080,899 is discretionary funds.

The Port Authority has received entitlement monies from the Federal Aviation Administration for Rohlsen Airport every year. However, the FAA has withheld discretionary funds from the authority since 2002 because of the potential flight hazard from birds attracted to the Anguilla landfill near the airport. With the landfill now only accepting baled debris, the FAA was satisfied with the progress made towards closing the facility.

VIPA owns the land occupied by the Anguilla landfill, but it is managed by the V.I. Waste Management Authority.

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“This is a significant milestone reached for the island of St. Croix,” said VIPA Executive Director Carlton Dowe. "This issue has been a standing item for the Port Authority’s Governing Board at every meeting. My staff and I have met with the FAA on five occasions regarding the issue of discretionary funds” for the airport.

The grant will be used to fund construction phases one and two of the airport’s apron rehabilitation project. The grant will also fund a terminal operational-enhancement study to investigate alternatives to improve and expedite the movement of passengers through security areas.

The Port Authority also received notification that the FAA has issued an AIP grant in the amount of $5.8 million that will be used to install a new perimeter security fence at the Cyril E. King Airport on St. Thomas. This security enhancement is required under federal regulations. A portion of the grant will also be used to rehabilitate the deteriorated general aviation apron.

The apron, which is primarily used for private jet parking, was constructed in 1986 and is in poor condition, according to VIPA. The grant will be issued as a multiyear grant with $2.5 million issued in Fiscal Year 2013 and the remaining $3.3 million to be appropriated in FY14.

The Airport Improvement Program provides grants to qualifying public agencies for the planning and development of public-use. AIP grants issued to the V.I. Port Authority cover 90 percent of the total cost of eligible airport improvement projects. VIPA funds the remaining 10 percent of the projects.

In Thursday’s release, Dowe thanked all who assisted VIPA in working through the issues and obtaining the grants. He said the authority will monitor all projects funded by the grants to improve airport facilities and enhance the gateways to our territory.

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The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued two grants totaling $10.6 million to the Virgin Islands Port Authority to assist the agency with major repairs at the territory’s airports, VIPA announced in a news release Thursday.

VIPA received a $4.8 million Airport Improvement Program grant for work at the Henry E. Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix. Of the total grant, $1.7 million is entitlement funds, and $3,080,899 is discretionary funds.

The Port Authority has received entitlement monies from the Federal Aviation Administration for Rohlsen Airport every year. However, the FAA has withheld discretionary funds from the authority since 2002 because of the potential flight hazard from birds attracted to the Anguilla landfill near the airport. With the landfill now only accepting baled debris, the FAA was satisfied with the progress made towards closing the facility.

VIPA owns the land occupied by the Anguilla landfill, but it is managed by the V.I. Waste Management Authority.

“This is a significant milestone reached for the island of St. Croix,” said VIPA Executive Director Carlton Dowe. "This issue has been a standing item for the Port Authority’s Governing Board at every meeting. My staff and I have met with the FAA on five occasions regarding the issue of discretionary funds” for the airport.

The grant will be used to fund construction phases one and two of the airport’s apron rehabilitation project. The grant will also fund a terminal operational-enhancement study to investigate alternatives to improve and expedite the movement of passengers through security areas.

The Port Authority also received notification that the FAA has issued an AIP grant in the amount of $5.8 million that will be used to install a new perimeter security fence at the Cyril E. King Airport on St. Thomas. This security enhancement is required under federal regulations. A portion of the grant will also be used to rehabilitate the deteriorated general aviation apron.

The apron, which is primarily used for private jet parking, was constructed in 1986 and is in poor condition, according to VIPA. The grant will be issued as a multiyear grant with $2.5 million issued in Fiscal Year 2013 and the remaining $3.3 million to be appropriated in FY14.

The Airport Improvement Program provides grants to qualifying public agencies for the planning and development of public-use. AIP grants issued to the V.I. Port Authority cover 90 percent of the total cost of eligible airport improvement projects. VIPA funds the remaining 10 percent of the projects.

In Thursday's release, Dowe thanked all who assisted VIPA in working through the issues and obtaining the grants. He said the authority will monitor all projects funded by the grants to improve airport facilities and enhance the gateways to our territory.