A new fuel farm is on the docket for the Lemhi County Airport after the Federal Aviation Administration granted the facility $1.1 million to improve infrastructure.
"We've been expecting that for awhile now and it's great to finally see it go through," Airport Board Vice Chairman Jim Crawford said.
Replacing the fueling equipment will happen next year, Crawford said. Airport board members originally expected the money earlier this year so they could have the projected finished by 2021, but for reasons unknown Crawford said the money was delayed.
"It's the federal government, what can you expect?" he joked.
Combined with the fact the coronavirus has extended wait times for construction materials, Crawford said he's just glad to make some kind of headway.
"We went from being told there would be a seven-week delay to 19 weeks," Crawford said. The delays are due to manufacturers following physical distancing standards and operating factories at reduced capacity.
The sooner board members can replace the equipment, the better, Crawford said. It's needed to be replaced for years. The sale of fuel helps pay for day-to-day costs at the small airport, he said. Fuel sales were hampered by the coronavirus pandemic earlier this year. Because people are traveling less, sales were down. But Crawford said he noticed in the past several weeks more people have come through the airport, and things are picking up.