The US state of New York has allocated nearly $20m in state funding to finance airport safety improvements and modernisation projects and to enhance the general and economic capacity of its airports.

The funds are part of the Airport Capital Grant Program and support the $200m Upstate Airport Economic Development and Revitalization Competition.

The Airport Capital Grant Program is a part of New York’s $275bn state-funded infrastructure programme.

The availability of funds was announced by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The Aviation Capital Grant Program is open to public-use airports for work related to safety or preservation, as well as for new construction projects that aim to enhance the airport’s economic competitiveness.

Cuomo said: “There is no second chance to make a first impression, and airports often serve as the gateway welcoming visitors to communities across New York.

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“Investing in the modernisation of our airports sends a strong message across the world that the Empire State is a premier destination for travellers and a great place to do business.”

In a separate bid to improve air services, the US Department of Transportation (USDOT) has allocated $12.2m in grants to 18 small communities.

This grant is a part of the Small Community Air Service Development Program. USDOT received 57 applications across 30 states for the grants.

US Transportation Secretary Elaine L Chao said: “This federal support to airports across the country will help to keep our nation’s airports in good shape and make air travel a better experience for passengers.”

Yuma in Arizona, Atlantic City in New Jersey and Rochester in Minnesota are three of the 18 communities that were awarded the grants.

Last week, USDOT announced airport infrastructure grants worth $520.5m to 287 airports located across 41 US states.