Funding and grants
- State of Minnesota Programs
- Federal Aviation Administration Programs
- Construction ePayment
- Maintenance and Operation (M and O)
- State Only Capital Project List
- MnDOT State Airport Scoring & Prioritization Model (new)
- Equipment Grants (new)
State of Minnesota programs
The airport municipality is responsible for project design and construction management. Many project-related costs, including consultant services, are eligible for state and/or federal aid as described below.
Airport Construction Grant Program
The State Construction Grant Program funds most capital improvements at state system airports based on a determination that the improvement is a justifiable benefit to the air-traveling public. Airports that are in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS) are also eligible for federal funding. State funding participation may vary from year to year. The funding rates are documented in a letter that can be found here:
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2024)
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2023)
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2022)
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2021)
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2020)
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2019)
- Funding Rates Letter (PDF) (state fiscal year 2018)
Two diagrams depicting a fictitious airport have been created to help spell out eligibility. The Airport Overview Diagram (PDF) displays the airport at a glance and the types of projects which could be eligible for funding. The Building Area Overview (PDF) zooms into the airport to show the eligibility of projects like hangars, aprons, fuel systems, and other airport buildings.
State-Only Funded Projects for a State Fiscal Year Grant
In 2023, the Office of Aeronautics updated its’ state funding prioritization model to align with MnDOT’s Project Selection Policy (Policy #OE016) and comply with the requirements of Minnesota Laws 2017, (First Special Session, Chapter 3, Article 3, Section 124) and Minnesota Laws 2021, (First Special Session, Chapter 5, Article 3, Section 134). Additionally, the new State Funding Prioritization Model was developed to be as objective, transparent, and data driven as possible and better align with the Minnesota State Aviation System Plan (MnSASP) policy framework and direction. Implementation of the new state funding prioritization model started with the scoring of SFY 2024 projects.
The published Prioritized Project List includes all capital projects included in MnDOT’s CIP (i.e., AirportIQ System Manager). Projects are scored using four MnSASP alignment criteria/objectives (open decision making, transportation safety, system stewardship, healthy communities) and two MnDOT priority criteria (airport component, licensing compliance). Per MnDOT’s PSP and Minnesota Laws 2017/2021, scores are included for all capital projects – projects with a total score of 48 and higher are allocated for funding in SFY 2024.
If you have a project(s) allocated for SFY 2024, you should have received a project offer letter by email. Please contact your MnDOT Regional Airport Development Section representative by September 30, 2023, to indicate if you wish to pursue (or not) a grant for the project(s). You must also submit a grant request letter by December 31, 2023, to move forward with grant award and execution. Allocated funds will be released January 1 if a grant request is not received for an allocated project(s).
NOTE: We cannot reimburse any work started prior to a fully executed grant agreement and project funds are encumbered. Only a fully executed State Grant Contract is a commitment of funding.
Airport Maintenance and Operation Program
State Airport Maintenance and Operation Grant Program provides State reimbursement to the state system airports for their documented, routine maintenance expenses up to a certain ceiling amount that is categorized by airport infrastructure. The day-to-day labor, material, equipment, and utility expenses of maintaining airport pavements, airport grounds, lighting systems, buildings, and maintenance equipment are eligible costs. Learn more about Maintenance and Operations.
Aeronautics Equipment Grants
Every piece of equipment used at a Minnesota public airport is an important part of the overall maintenance and safety of Minnesota’s airport system, and its users/the people it serves. Any solicitation is for equipment used for the maintenance and operations at these public airports. See below for current solicitations and for grants awarded for each fiscal year.
Hangar Loan Revolving Account Program
The State Hangar Loan Revolving Account Program provides an 80% interest-free loan to state system airports for building new hangars. The loans are paid back in equal monthly installments over 20 years. Payment receipts, as they become available, are then loaned out again to other airports needing hangars. The hangar loan may be used to fund hangar site prep as well as the hangar building. Hangar site prep, including the hangar floor, may also be funded with a state grant at current participation rates, if funds are available. However, for site prep to considered for a state grant, it must be shown as a proposed project in the Sponsor’s Airport CIP in the state fiscal year of proposed construction.
Eligibility for State of Minnesota programs
To be eligible for state grants-in-aid, the airport must meet four criteria set forth in Minnesota Statute, Chapter 360.
- The airport must be owned by a municipality. Municipalities include cities, counties, and townships in Minnesota, acting individually or jointly.
- The airport must be licensed for public use. The Commissioner of Transportation is responsible for licensing public airports in accordance with rules promulgated by MnDOT and administered through the Office of Aeronautics.
- The airport must be in the State Airport System. This System is designated by the Commissioner of Transportation and approved by the Governor. Revisions occur periodically. Minnesota Statute, Chapter 360, allows for up to 195 airports to be in the State Airport System.
- The airport must be zoned or in the process of zoning. Municipalities are given the power to create, adopt, and enforce airport zoning. The Commissioner of Transportation is responsible for approving airport zoning ordinances prior to adoption in accordance with zoning criteria set forth in rules promulgated by MnDOT and administered through the Office of Aeronautics.
Check our contacts page for the engineering representative in your region.
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Programs
Airport Improvement Program
The FAA administers an Airport Improvement Program (AIP) that provides grant-in-aid funding for planning, land acquisition, and capital improvement projects at Airports included in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS) airports.
To be eligible for federal grants-in-aid, an airport must be in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS). To qualify, an airport must be more than 30 minutes' driving time from the nearest existing NPIAS airport and must have a minimum of 10 based aircraft. Currently, there are 97 airports in Minnesota in the NPIAS. Minnesota Statute, Chapter 360.0161 requires municipalities to apply for federal financial airport assistance through MnDOT. The Office of Aeronautics is the designated State agent for providing this coordination.
Programming a Federal project
When the sponsor determines that they intend to apply for a federal grant for a project included in the ACIP, the next step is to program the project.
Sponsors must submit copies of federal programming forms to MnDOT, Office of Aeronautics.
Cost/price analyses for contracts
Beginning in 2012, these will now be required as part of the grant application package for AIP grants, and includes engineering contracts. You may find the program guidance letter on this topic PGL 12-03 (Change to Order 5100-38C, Paragraph 906, Price or Cost Analysis) at https://www.faa.gov/airports/aip/guidance_letters/.
Guidance on the negotiation process may be found at: https://www.faa.gov/airports/resources/advisory_circulars/.
Before proceeding, please scan your entire payment into one PDF package. This must include the signed credit application and all supporting invoices. Follow these instructions:
- Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- In the subject line, enter your airport's identifier code (IDENT) and the state project number which is found on the top of your credit application. Example: HIB 6902-118.
- Attach the scanned PDF of the payment package to the email and send the email.
Your payment will then been submitted and will soon be processed. We value your feedback. If you have suggestions to improve the system or questions, please email your regional engineer.