- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 15, 2014

ROCKFORD, Ill. (AP) - A Thursday groundbreaking ceremony is planned for a $43 million jet repair facility at Rockford International Airport even as officials continue sorting out how to pay for the project.

The state of Illinois has committed $15 million for construction and airport officials are looking for $10 million in federal funds. Officials say the project will create at least 500 jobs. They also hope the new maintenance, repair and overhaul facility will attract more flight-related business, development and jobs in the area.

Surveyors have already checked out the 13-acre site on which the two jet hangars will be built.

Airport Director Mike Dunn tells the Rockford Register Star (https://bit.ly/1sfaXM2 ) he expects airport commissioners to consider an agreement finalizing financial plans within the next 30 days. The airport, Rockford and Winnebago County will share the rest of the project cost if it’s approved by officials within all three entities.

“I’m not worried,” Dunn said. “The city and the county have been very positive to work with. We’re working on a draft agreement. We’ll have it done soon.”

The project was announced in August and secured several days later through a 10-year lease agreement for the facility. AAR Corp. agreed to pay the airport $400,000 a year in rent.

Airport officials are aiming to complete the facility by the end of next year, Dunn said.

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Information from: Rockford Register Star, https://www.rrstar.com

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