Hayden chips in for airport effort | SteamboatToday.com

Hayden chips in for airport effort

Danie Harrelson

— The Yampa Valley Regional Airport will be receiving a slightly larger donation from the town of Hayden this year.

The Hayden Board of Trustees Thursday approved $20,500 to support 2002 airport improvements.

Last year the board approved a $19,000 allocation, or approximately 10 percent of Hayden’s sale tax revenue from airport business activity, Town Clerk Lisa Johnston said. That amount almost doubled the board’s approval for $10,000 in 2000.

The money will be used to match state and federal dollars for airport improvement projects, Aviation Director Jim Parker said.

Without funding from local governments, some airport projects cannot be completed, Parker added.

Routt County’s share of the airport’s projected capital requirements for 2002 exceeds $473,000, Parker said.

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Parker explained that Hayden’s contribution to the airport is easier to calculate than nearby Craig or Moffat County.

“It’s more difficult to determine what kind of economic impact they (Craig and Moffat County) receive,” Parker said. “It’s quantifiable numbers from the town of Hayden because it’s an actual sales tax they have on the airport.”

Parker said he is doubtful that Steamboat Springs will contribute to the airport’s capital fund based on their refusal last year but he hopes to get some funding from Moffat County and Craig.

Last year he requested $60,000 from Moffat County and $30,000 from Craig. Moffat County instead gave him $30,000, and Craig chipped in $15,000 for 2001 improvement projects.

“I’m expecting at least what I received last year,” he said.

Mayor Chuck Grobe expressed the concern of many of the board members when he asked if the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks would have any effect on the amount of flights in and out of Yampa Valley Regional Airport this winter.

Parker said he doesn’t think fear of flying will keep people away.

“People are getting back on the airlines,” Parker said. “I don’t think fear is going to be a factor. It might be economic or other things that might be a factor that could impact the ski season.”

Six flights will continue to operate out of the airport, he said, and Ski Corp. has said the airlines’ winter schedule will

stay intact.