The Federal Goverment is expecting to launch its new regional airports fund in late September via the Grants Hub.
In April this year, weeks before the Federal Election, Minister for Infrastructure Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack pledged $100 million in a program to upgrade regional airports separate to the existing Remote Airstrip Upgrade Program.
Initially, the money was to be available from 1 July 2019, but the launch has been delayed for unstated reasons.
“By boosting regional airport investment by up to $100 million, we are making sure regional people and their communities get the infrastructure and services they deserve for business, leisure, health and education needs,” McCormack said at the time.
Caroline Wilkie, CEO of the Australian Airports Association, welcomed the grant program when it was announced, saying it would assist with a funding shortfall predicted for most of Australia's regional airports.
“The AAA report into regional airports in 2016 found airports provide essential links for communities but that many operate at a loss and have reduced capacity for essential capital works,” Wilkie said at the time.
“This funding will start to address this funding shortfall and assist this essential infrastructure to continue servicing communities into the future.”