Report shows Onslow County airport had signs of growth before pandemic


JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – The Onslow County airport contributed more than half-a-billion dollars to the state and local economy including more than $124 million in payroll from jobs connected to Albert J. Ellis Airport.

The NC Department of Transportation released a study that annually reviews the economic impacts of the state’s airport. The study, from the NC State University Institute of Transportation Research and Education, is based on 2019 data. It also shows that more than 10% of the state’s economy is tied to aviation.

According to Chris White, AAE, Airport Director “OAJ is home to two airlines, two lifesaving medivac operations, a flight school, hosts firefighting and cargo flights, supports aerial application for agriculture and provides the military with a location for important flight training and mobility. Not only does the airport provide the connections to the world for businesses, family members and visitors, it’s an important economic engine operated by Onslow County supplying much needed employment and generating governmental revenue used to help keep taxes low.”

At the Albert J. Ellis Airport (OAJ), the airport and its business partners contribute $565,810,000 to the state and local economy. This activity provides 3,460 jobs with a combined personal income of approximately $124,990,000. This economic activity generates an estimated $19,984,000 in state and local taxes thereby helping to lower property and income taxes.

“And it shows that aviation reaches everyone deep in the community, whether it’s medical transport out there, you’re flying business associates in, or you’re having family members come in and visit you, aviation impacts everyone,” White said.

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