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Fort McMurray Airport Authority receives nearly $1.6 million in federal funding

PHOTO. A Boeing 737 700-series jet aircraft at Fort McMurray International Airport takes on passengers before its maiden flight on Oct. 28, 2019. Monday and Thursday service runs during the winter until the end of March. Supplied by the Fort McMurray International Airport.

FORT MCMURRAY (660 NEWS) – The Fort McMurray Airport Authority will receive nearly $1.6 million in federal funding.

More than $4 million in ‘Regional Air Transportation Initiative’ funding was announced on Wednesday for seven regional airports across the prairies.

The cash is being provided by Western Economic Diversification Canada. RATI was launched this past March to help regional air carriers and airports through COVID-19 hardships.

“Regional air transportation is crucial to local economic growth, the movement of goods and the connectivity of Canadians across the country,” reads a press release from the Government of Canada.

“The pandemic has had major impacts on regional air transportation ecosystems, affecting communities and local businesses from coast to coast to coast.”

Fort McMurray Airport Authority President and CEO RJ Steenstra said this support for regional connectivity is welcome news.

“Remote communities such as ours depend on air connectivity to bolster economic activity and growth of entire sectors and industries,” he stated.

“Reliable air connectivity not only supports thousands of jobs, but also ensures the viability of our airport which is critical to the sustainability of our community.”