La Grande/UC Airport sign

A welcome sign stands outside the La Grande/union County Airport on Thursday, Sept. 16, 2021. The airport was awarded a $980,000 grant from Connect Oregon in 2022 for fuel storage and maintenance facility improvements, according to a press release from the Union County Board of Commissioners. Connect Oregon is an initiative established by the 2005 state Legislature to invest in non-highway modes of transportation.

LA GRANDE — The La Grande/Union County Airport has been awarded a $980,000 grant from Connect Oregon for fuel storage and maintenance facility improvements, according to a press release from the Union County Board of Commissioners. Connect Oregon is an initiative established by the 2005 state Legislature to invest in non-highway modes of transportation.

The funding the La Grande/Union County Airport will receive will allow the airport to add a new 10,000-gallon jet fuel tank, a 5,000-gallon fuel truck, a maintenance shop, an aircraft hangar and electrical generators to power its fuel farm and fixed-based operations during power outages. In addition, the added fuel capacity will support emergency medical transportation, wildland fire suppression, cargo shipment and general aviation.

Paul Anderes, a member of the Union County Board of Commissioners, said the added fuel storage capacity will help wildfire firefighting efforts in a big way because more jet aircraft are now used to fight wildfires and they use more fuel.

Union County Public Works Director Doug Wright, who is also the county's airport director, said the the funding the county has been awarded is a credit to the hard work and support provided by Anderes, State Rep. Bobby Levy (R-Echo), the Oregon Department of Transportation and the Oregon Department of Aviation.

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General assignment reporter

Beats include the communities of North Powder, Imbler, Island City and Union, education, Union County veterans programs and local history. Dick joined The Observer in 1983, first working as a sports and outdoors reporter.

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