The Putnam County Board of Aviation Commissioners recently announced its new runway rehabilitation project fundraising initiative.
The 36/18 Project kicked off with a generous grant of $10,000 from the Putnam County Community Foundation to help reach the project's $27,000 goal.
To date, more than 50 percent of the goal has been reached.
The 36/18 Project will help provide part of the local match for more than $3.7 million in federal and state grant dollars that will help finance runway improvements at the Putnam County Airport.
The investment in runway improvements will have an expected life of 20-25 years.
Due to changes in the funding provided by the Federal Aviation Administration, the local match requirement increased from 2.5 percent to 7.5 percent of project costs.
"Even with the increase in the match requirement, the significant leverage of federal and state dollars is of benefit to the community," BOAC Chairman J. R. Scott said.
"We are asking for the community's support to help us match our local budget and economic development funds. Each dollar of local match provides over $12 in state and federal funds."
The funds raised in the community will support other funds provided by the Putnam County Commissioners and the Putnam County Council, as well as savings accumulated for the project by the BOAC.
"Both the commissioners and the county council have been supportive of our efforts and we appreciate their support," Scott said. "We understand that they also have budget limitations as well."
"To generate the $27,000, the BOAC is soliciting sponsorships for each of the 5,400 feet of Runway 36-18, the main runway at the airport" said Duane Skoog, BOAC member and chairman of the fundraising project. "Sponsorships are available for a minimum contribution of $5 per foot of runway length," Skoog added.
Sponsors will be recognized by receiving honorary aviation recognition of "Air Cadet" for donations from younger members of the community to "Senior Chief Pilot" for donations of $2,000 or more. Donors will be memorialized with a plaque at the airport and public recognition at the ribbon cutting of the completed project.
"The BOAC has been preparing for this project for several years. Unfortunately, a change in the federal funding formal has required us to pursue all avenues to raise the additional required local match," Scott said. "We greatly appreciate the support that the airport receives in the citizens and from our business community."
Donations to the project are considered a charitable contribution and may be deductible under the Internal Revenue Code. Sponsorships can be made through the Greencastle/Putnam County Development Center at 2 S. Jackson St. in Greencastle.
Runway 36/18 should be noted on the check or in any correspondence.
For more information, persons may contact Scott at 721-7260 or Skoog at (765) 363-2093.
The other members of the Putnam County Board of Aviation Commissioners, Dr. Perry Wainman, Rex Eaton and Vern Bothwell Jr., may also be contacted.