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Biden Administration Gives Aviation Industry Nearly $500 Million In Aid

Brittany Jordan

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The Biden administration will offer nearly $500 million dollars to hundreds of aircraft manufacturing companies, the Department of Transportation announced Monday.

The $482.3 million in funding will be awarded to 313 U.S. companies based in 37 states and Puerto Rico, according to the Department of Transportation. These funds are part of the Aviation Manufacturing Jobs Protection Program established in Democrats’ $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package that President Joe Biden signed into law in March.

“For the past year and a half, our aviation industry workers have helped keep this economy moving, including by supporting the delivery of lifesaving medical equipment and vaccines,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said in a statement. “The funding announced today will save jobs and support the workers who have supported us throughout the pandemic.”

The program will offer aerospace manufacturers enough funds to pay half of their payroll for certain employee categories for up to six months, according to the DOT announcement. The funds could protect nearly 23,000 jobs made vulnerable by economic conditions during the pandemic. (RELATED: Delta Airlines To Charge Workers $200 Per Month For Not Being Vaccinated)

The DOT said more than 100,000 aerospace jobs have been lost due to the pandemic and hundreds of thousands more remain at risk.

Airline industry workers hold signs during a protest in Chicago, Illinois on Sept. 9, 2020. (Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP via Getty Images)

Protecting vulnerable aerospace jobs could benefit both the airline industry and supply chain, the agency said. About 1.2 million of the 2.2 million aerospace workers in the U.S. contribute to the supply chain.

One of the reasons for increasing inflation is supply chain delays, according to some economists.

About 60% of the 313 companies that will receive funds have fewer than 100 employees, the DOT said, and just 20% percent of the firms employ more than 250 workers.

The Kansas-based Spirit AeroSystems will receive $75.5 million, more than any other program recipient. Public funds are projected to protect 3,214 jobs at the company.

During the coronavirus outbreak in 2020, local officials placed tight restrictions on various economic activities, wreaking havoc on the airline industry. While the number of daily air travelers has increased substantially in 2021 compared to last year, it remains below 2019 levels, Transportation Security Administration data showed.

The federal government has given U.S. airline companies $54 billion in relief since 2020, the Associated Press reported.

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Brittany Jordan is an award-winning journalist who reports on breaking news in the U.S. and globally for the Federal Inquirer. Prior to her position at the Federal Inquirer, she was a general assignment features reporter for Newsweek, where she wrote about technology, politics, government news and important global events around the world. Her work has also appeared in the Washington Post, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Toronto Star, Frederick News-Post, West Hawaii Today, the Miami Herald, and more. Brittany enjoys food, travel, photography, and hoarding notebooks and journals. Her goal is to do more longform features journalism, narrative writing and documentary work, and to one day write a successful novel and screenplay.

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