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Mason City Airport to get over $600,000 in federal funds for improvements

This news story was published on June 24, 2014.
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mason-city-airportWASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Tom Harkin late last week announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has awarded a total of $601,317 to the Mason City Municipal Airport for infrastructure improvements. Harkin is a senior member of the panel that funds transportation initiatives.

“Continuing to make improvements to the Mason City Municipal Airport is important to the economic health of this community because the availability of a nearby airport is a valuable asset that can help draw new businesses to the area,” said Harkin. “I am pleased that Mason City has received funds to improve the airport and I look forward to the benefits it will bring to the local economy.”

Specifically, these funds will be used to rehabilitate runway lighting at the airport. Bids are being solicited at this time by airport staff to find a contractor to complete the project.

In other airport news, documents show that there is still no carrier at the airport. However, two carriers have submitted bids – Great Lakes Aviation and Air Choice One – to provide essential air service. The Airport Commission will respond by July 2, 2014.

The airport is also seeking a new restaurant operator. Sources indicate that the former airport restaurant operators closed up in April and moved their bakery business to Fertile, Iowa.  The commission is deciding how to use the vacant space at this time.

It was also reported that the vending machines at the airport terminal hardly ever get used and have a “low volume”.

The commission also wants to install a new entrance sign, but has come up short in grant opportunities and may simply pay to have the project completed. No decision has been finalized.


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17 Responses to Mason City Airport to get over $600,000 in federal funds for improvements

  1. Iowa Sucks Reply Report comment

    June 25, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    Lots of hearsay out of LVS. He always seems to know a “friend” that knows it all. Like how Colorado is going to hell in a hand basket because if legal marijubwanna, when all the facts indicate otherwise. All crime has been reduced there.

    • LVS Reply Report comment

      June 26, 2014 at 8:54 am

      @SUCKS-I have lots of friends, which you would know nothing about. All you have is brain dead doppers and dealers. Go read the report on yahoo about the health problems associated with pot. With any luck you will catch something.

  2. Mediator Reply Report comment

    June 25, 2014 at 11:51 am

    While I agree with the desire to not spend wastefully, I do want to comment about the need to keep up our infrastructure.

    Even though we don’t have commercial flights right now, Mason City Airport is a vital safety landing spot for commercial planes in trouble.

    If you can remember the Sioux City crash from back a few years, you can imagine why we need to keep up our network of airports which can land large craft.

    • LVS Reply Report comment

      June 25, 2014 at 1:21 pm

      @mediator-I hear what you are saying, but, how many emergency landings have there been at that airport over the years? It sound to me like an excuse to keep on spending money needlessly.

      • Mediator Reply Report comment

        June 25, 2014 at 5:05 pm

        Being prepared for the worst case scenario has led us to spend huge amounts of money. I get what you are saying. But I can’t see letting what we have fall into disrepair and possibly cost us the lives of a planeload of people.

        If this is paid by user fees and not taxes, then it’s simply people paying to protect their own lives by keeping up the infrastructure of flying.

        If you think this is a poor use of their money, please explain how it is so.

        • LVS Reply Report comment

          June 25, 2014 at 5:33 pm

          @Mediator-is all the money from local user fees and taxes. I doubt it. I know the owner of Harley has five airplanes out there. Why should tax money that could be used on other things go to finance his hobby?

          • Buzzard Airlines

            June 25, 2014 at 5:53 pm

            You know for a fact that he has FIVE planes at the airport. You just keep making up you own facts to support your own theories.

          • Mediator

            June 25, 2014 at 6:30 pm

            LVS, my point was that all of the people flying overhead, having a safe flight, are paying to have a network of safe landing strips in case of emergency. These are federal level funds and federal level safety concerns.

            The airport is also a backup site should we suddenly find ourselves at war and our airforce airstrips are bombed. Having quality landing strips ready could be the difference in many things and many lives.

            Worrying about local planes doesn’t seem right.

          • LVS

            June 25, 2014 at 6:49 pm

            @Buzzard Breath-That is what I was told by a guy that has flown with him several times. I have not seen it myself.

          • Philosophus

            June 25, 2014 at 10:31 pm

            Kudos to LVS for making his point about Ron Minert the owner of Harley and his airplanes. John Hosmer of Toyota also has a plane. In emergency landings the pilots would be glad to have any stretch of runway. Keep it clear and use solar lights. It’ll be fine…remember, it’s an emergency… The pilots will know what to do.

          • LVS

            June 26, 2014 at 8:58 am

            @Philly_ didn’t say anything bad about Minert at all. If he can afford airplanes more power to him. But, if he has them he should pay for the service, not the taxpayers. He is a side issue anyway. I am sure there are other people out there with planes that can afford to pay for improvements.

  3. Ben Reply Report comment

    June 24, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    This airport is a joke. The prices to fly out of it are outrageous……Why do they think everyone drives to Minneapolis or Des Moines to fly? Get a clue.

  4. sad but true Reply Report comment

    June 24, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    goes goood with the 500.000 snow plow they just were given, millions of dollars, no plains. Sounds like good government again

  5. LVS Reply Report comment

    June 24, 2014 at 10:03 am

    Why is this spending of our tax dollars necessary? There are only private aircraft flying out of there. Let them pay for their hobby themselves.

    • Anonymous Reply Report comment

      June 24, 2014 at 7:46 pm

      You should realize that the federal funding for this comes from fees and taxes on aviation, so if you don’t use aviation it is not your tax money being used.

      • LVS Reply Report comment

        June 25, 2014 at 10:30 am

        @anonymous-tax money is still tax money. It is paid by the citizens. I have paid more than my share of airline taxes and used to fly out of Mason City all the time. I started flying when Ozark was still out there and have watched it go downhill ever since. The money could be used somewhere else. Just because there are tax funds available does not mean it should be wasted.

  6. Philosophus Reply Report comment

    June 24, 2014 at 9:59 am

    Ok, you know what? How many people have the money to actually fly out of this airport? Harkin, you better get a clue. Airport dumping of funds ISNT what we need right now. You need to get off your legislative duff and develop land ownership programs based on my one human to one acre model. Sick of all this waste spending.