WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) joined U.S. Senators Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth to announce $9 million in federal grants for the Chicago Rockford International Airport. This funding, through the Department of Transportation, will be used for apron construction as Rockford’s airport continues to expand cargo operations and is in need of additional aircraft parking space.
“Chicago Rockford International Airport plays a major role in the economic health of our region,” Congresswoman Bustos said. “They bring good-paying jobs and business back home to our community and I’m excited by their outstanding work and continued growth. I cannot thank Senators Durbin and Duckworth enough for their partnership and will continue to work alongside them to secure these important investments.”
“Chicago Rockford International Airport is not only a vital transportation asset, it’s an economic driver for all of Northern Illinois,” Senator Durbin said. “Thanks to continued federal investment, the ongoing expansion and upgrades at RFD will create jobs and ensure we can keep up with increased air cargo demands. I look forward to continuing to work with Senator Duckworth and Congresswoman Bustos to bring these investments to Rockford.”
“Investing in our airport infrastructure is vital to the strength of our state’s transportation systems and our local economies,” Senator Duckworth said. “This funding will help ensure Rockford International Airport has the necessary resources to make much-needed improvements and support local job growth. Along with Senator Durbin and Congresswoman Bustos, I will continue to advocate for funding that makes our air transit safer and more reliable and drives economic development in Northern Illinois.”
In March, Congresswoman Bustos founded the Air Cargo Caucus and pointed to the air cargo operations at Chicago Rockford International Airport as an example for success. The goal of the caucus is to spur collaboration in Congress on cargo related issues and facilitate discussion by holding meetings, site visits and issue briefings. Congresswoman Bustos and Senators Durbin and Duckworth have consistently fought for the funding needs of regional airports and understand the impact projects like these have on local economies.
Since 2015, the lawmakers have secured more than $33 million in federal funding for improvements at Rockford Airport, including $5 million announced in July 2017 for the construction of a 30,000 square yard cargo apron to provide additional aircraft parking.