As the 2016 summer fire season started up, Walt Sitz, manager of the Burns Municipal Airport, had one piece of good news. The taxiways on his airport – how planes get from one runway to another – were complete.
Walt said when it came to emergency management, like wildfires, the airport was critical. “We have the air ambulance and, during fire season, we get busy.”
Smokejumpers are a regular sight in the airport terminal, as they wait to find out which fires they’ll be sent to fight.
“This is a very important part of our community,” said Walt. “Without it, it would impact business, safety, emergency management and transportation. I’m glad the Oregon Lottery was able to help us get this done.”
Dauna Wensenk, city manager of Burns, added, “Without the Oregon Lottery money, we wouldn’t have been able to finish the project.”
Through Oregon Lottery funds, the taxiway project – which cost approximately $1.6 million total – was completed. Lottery dollars funded roughly $216,600 of the project.