Funding and grants
- State of Minnesota Programs
- Federal Aviation Administration Programs
- CARES Act
- Construction ePayments
- Maintenance and Operation (M and O)
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 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.
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.
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/.
Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
(H.R. 748, Public Law 116-136)
The CARES Act is a federal program that provides funds to eligible airports to address the financial impact of COVID-19. FAA rules on CARES Act funding may be found on their website: https://www.faa.gov/airports/cares_act/. The FAA has also posted a list of frequently asked questions to provide further guidance on eligible expenses and minimum documentation requirements. Questions that are not addressed here should be directed to the FAA Program Manager for clarification.
Eligible expenses should be submitted to the MnDOT Regional Engineer following the instructions below. Supplemental state guidance in the frequently asked questions (PDF).
View the payment status of submitted credit applications.
CARES credit application forms
Please scan your entire payment in PDF format. This must include the signed credit application and all supporting invoices. Attach the document in 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-C1.
- Did you use the correct credit application? State M&O forms will not be accepted for CARES submissions.
- Is the credit application signed and notarized?
- Is the required backup provided? Reference the FAA’s frequently asked questions page for more information.
- Are the expenses within the permissible time frame?
- Operations costs after January 20th (prorate or sort out ineligible costs)
- New development expenses after March 27th
- Debt Service after March 27th
- Is the total request less than the grant amount. Requests that exceed the remaining amount on the grant will not be accepted.
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 email@example.com
- 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 and provid