There's a snag in getting money for a new waterline extension at the Lake Chelan Airport.

Money from the state would pay for most of the project, but it's no longer available this year.

Chelan County Commissioner Tiffany Gering says State Representative Mike Steele of Chelan is addressing the issue.

“Representative Steel has said that it will be his top priority for next year’s budget, and it will be funded fully,” Gering said.

Representative Steele is the ranking Republican member of the House Capital Budget Committee, which sets up funding for projects such as the extension.

The $8.5 million waterline extension at the Lake Chelan Airport is needed for more hangers to be built and could help provide infrastructure for more housing development.

The airport is jointly owned by the city and the Chelan Douglas Port Authority.

Gering says the two parties have differing visions for use of the waterline.

"The city is looking at it as, 'We could have a waterline out to the airport and have more housing, provide affordable housing out there, and serve more people,'" Gering said. "And the port is looking at it as. 'We want to use this for the airport for economic development."

Lake Chelan Airport already gets half the level of air traffic as Pangborn Airport, and Gering says the addition of hangers could make it an essential part of economic development for the county.

Gering also said the airport has a six-year waiting list for hangers. She made the comments while updating fellow county commissioners on the waterline project Monday morning.

Meetings between the Port, the City of Chelan and Chelan County led to the following proposal fund the waterway extension.

(The state was asked to about $5 million, but was asked to boost the amount by $1 million by the the Regional Port and the City of Chelan.)

Total Cost Estimate $8,500,000

Funding Sources

State Capital Appropriation $6,500,000
(Current State Funding $5,660,000)
Chelan County .09 Sales Tax Fund $ 666,666
City of Chelan $ 666,666
Regional Port $ 666,666

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