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SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – With work already in progress at the Santa Barbara Airport in the background, a presentation of funding from the federal government is helping to move future plans forward.

Congressman Salud Carbajal (D-California) said he has secured $3.94 million for the airport projects. It is part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that is infusing funds for many projects on the Central Coast that also includes Highway 101 widening and rail improvements.   

In the past three years, Carbajal said $30 million has come in to regional airports for their needs as part of the federal support. This includes the Santa Maria and San Luis Obispo airports.

Santa Barbara Airport Director Christopher Hastert and Santa Barbara Mayor Randy Rowse spoke about the need for the airport to meet federal standards for safety and efficiencies, along with the traveling customer demand.

The terminal saw its passenger count exceeding a million in the last year and it has had a recent boost with the arrival of service from Southwest Airlines.

Hastert said Delta will restore service in June using a larger and quieter A220 plane.

One immediate project is ready in an emergency. It will divert overflowing creek water away from the runway where it has caused the airport to shut down in large storms. That will be done with k-rail barriers the airport can bring in as needed and install in the problem areas.

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