AIRPORTS running on thin air since the start of the pandemic will be handed a desperately needed $1.2 million federal government boost.
Member for New England Barnaby Joyce announced the funds for regional airports in Tamworth, Inverell, Armidale and Quirindi that will see a number of improvements take-off.
"For our regional communities, the local airport provides an essential link to the rest of Australia," he said.
"These projects will improve the safety of aircraft, operators and passengers, the delivery of goods and services and better meet the operational requirements of aeromedical and other emergency services, including supporting bushfire preparedness."
In Tamworth, $300,000 will be spent on the reconstruction and sealing of the taxiway pavement to improve safety and access.
The same amount will be dished out to Armidale for an airside aircrew rest facility for emergency services, access gates, aircraft tie-downs and other improvements.
Inverell will receive $278,000 for runway lighting upgrades, new wind indicators and a back-up generator to support crucial aviation operations while Quirindi will get $300,000 for runway repairs.
The funds will not only back the aviation industry at a crucial time, but deliver a boost to the local economy, Mr Joyce said.
"This gives us the capacity to keep tourists coming into the New England and keep the commerce going," he said.
The upgrades are funded under the second round of the federal government's regional airports program. The announcement was made on Thursday.
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