Temple airport

Sean Parker was appointed director of Temple’s Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport in October and plans to make the facility financially independent.

Temple’s Draughon-Miller Central Texas Regional Airport is set to receive more than $1.93 million in funding as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act.

The Texas Transportation Commission approved the federal funding for the airport during their July meeting. The Texas Department of Transportation said it plans on providing about $60 million in funding this year for 275 state community airports.

This funding will go to help support planned electrical improvements at the airport, with bidding on the project expected to be executed later this summer or fall.

Airport Director Sean Parker said the number of flights of all kinds going out of the city’s airport had seen a steep decline since the start of the pandemic.

“The corporate aviation tenants rarely fly these days,” Parker said. “We mostly see medical-related flights, along with a few local pilots who like to get out and fly on nice weather days, probably to just get out of the house for a bit.”

Before the start of the pandemic the airport saw between 25 and 30 flights per day, but that number dropped to under five a day in April.

The city’s airport previously received $69,000 of aid in April as part of aid given by the Federal Aviation Administration. The administration had awarded more than $811.5 million in aid to airports in Texas.

TxDOT said flights from community airports, such as Temple’s, account for more than three million flight hours per year.