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Wichita Falls Regional Airport to use funds for various projects

WICHITA FALLS, Texas (KAUZ) – Wichita Falls Regional Airport has received some extra funding from the city council. The airport has experienced several problems that were not previously anticipated.

The airport received $97,000 to work on various projects. According to airport administrator Jon Waltjen, the need for these funds has not affected the day-to-day operations of the airport.

One of the projects involves updating the airport’s information screens, which notify passengers if a flight has been delayed and also display advertisements.

Instead of replacing all of the existing screens, the airport chose to outsource the creation and operation of the flight information and advertising system to a new contractor.

“Our previous contractor who supported it upgraded their system, which could no longer support screens, so we had to find a new vendor to control those screens and to do our advertising,” Waltjen said.

The absence of the original contractor only affects their advertising, while flight information remains intact.

“We’re currently working with them on the ad side because it’s a different format, so we’re working on that side right now,” Waltjen said. “But as far as flight information is concerned, at the moment it’s all up to date and accurate. So we’re working with them on that aspect.”

The airport also needs to repair some concrete panels on the ramp and replace an HVAC refrigeration unit that was damaged in recent winter storms.

“It’s just housework,” said John Burrus, director of aviation, traffic and transportation. “Some of these issues started late in the budget process last year, so we really didn’t want to change the budget at the time. And as that worked out, we’ve gotten two or three other items that have come up since we approved the budget in October.

Burrus wants the public to know that these funds are not coming from local tax dollars, but rather from COVID funding. Officials said the money would be returned to the city over time.

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