August 04, 2022

Wyden, Merkley: $850,000 Federal Grant to Salem Airport to Support Regional Air Service Effort

Potential flight destinations include Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Phoenix

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley today announced that the City of Salem will receive a $850,000 federal grant to initiate regional commercial air service at the Salem Airport.

“Regional air service through small airports just like this one in Oregon’s capital city are crucial to our state’s economy,” Wyden said. “I am gratified to see these dollars go toward expanding regional air service in Salem to have a more accessible option for travel in and out of the Mid-Willamette Valley. Investing in smaller airports like the Salem Airport lays the groundwork to continue to support our state’s economic growth and tourism.”

“Regional airports serve an important role in supporting Oregon’s economy and by expanding service, they increase opportunities for business and Oregonians,” Merkley said.?“I am happy to see this funding going to the Salem Airport to recruit a commercial airline provider and expand their air service.?I look forward to seeing the results!” 

The City of Salem will receive $850,000 from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Small Community Air Service Development Program to recruit, initiate, and support new air service to Los Angeles, Calif., San Francisco, Calif., Las Vegas, Nev., and Phoenix, Ariz.

“I would like to thank the senators for their support for this grant,” Salem Mayor Chuck Bennett said. “This money is an important step in the City of Salem getting back commercial air. Commercial air will support and grow the Mid-Willamette Valley economy, increase tourism, reduce traffic and congestion along the I-5 corridor, and create less dependence on the Portland International Airport.” 

“Commercial air service is the jet fuel needed to create a diversified and vibrant regional economy— providing smart and strategic economic development solutions around affordable and accessible travel options, talent and investment recruitment, carbon footprint reduction and so much more,” Travel Salem CEO Angie Onyewuchi said.