Economic Development Newsroom

Airport Releases 2002 Economic Impact Report

Wednesday October 8, 2003

Contacts:Rande Swann, P. R. Director Lou. Regional Airport Authority

Louisville Metro Mayor Jerry Abramson and Louisville Regional Airport Authority Board Chairman J. Michael Brown released the results today of the most recent comprehensive economic impact survey of Louisville’s airports, conducted by the University of Louisville.

“The survey shows that in 2002, alone, Louisville’s airports and its tenants generated over $220 million in total state and local taxes,” noted Mayor Abramson. “The $220 million recurs annually. In addition, Louisville’s airports and its tenants generated nearly $19 million in one-time total local and state taxes from airport construction, for a total of $239 million in total taxes generated. This is further magnified by the fact the airports generate 36,000 jobs, as well as annually generate $1.6 billion in payroll and $4.3 billion in business expenditures.”

“This unequivocally reaffirms that Louisville’s airports are the engines powering the community’s economy,” noted Chairman Brown. “The airport expansion that began in the late 1980’s and was completed in the late 1990’s has exceeded its benefits to the community in total jobs, payroll, state and local taxes--over a decade ahead of projections. The payroll generated exceeds even the jobs generated, meaning the airport has created even better paying positions than initially anticipated. Clearly, the airport expansion has ‘paid for itself’ in less than five years after its second runway was completed.”

Mayor Abramson further remarked that, “The former City and County, as well as the Commonwealth, have reaped well over a 100% return on their investment (ROI) in the airport expansion in local and state taxes generated in 2002, alone.” The former City and County governments invested $50 million and the Commonwealth invested $80 million in the Louisville Airport Improvement Program (LAIP). In 2002 alone, Louisville’s airports generated nearly $78 million in total local taxes ($71 million in annually recurring taxes and $7 million in one-time construction related taxes). The airports generated nearly $162 million in state taxes ($150 million in annually recurring taxes and $12 million in one-time construction related taxes).

” In 2002 alone, the one-time construction impacts at Louisville’s airports generated more than:
· 6,000 total jobs

· $219 million in total payroll

· $628 million in total business expenditures
· $18 million in total state and local taxes due primarily to the construction and completion of UPS Worldport at Louisville International Airport.

C. T. “Skip” Miller, Executive Director of the Louisville Regional Airport Authority, remarked that, “Louisville International Airport’s importance to the community goes far beyond its economic impacts. It is essential in attracting and retaining business, conventions, meetings, and tourism, as well as in providing access to the global marketplace and destinations.”

The economic impact survey includes direct, indirect, and induced economic impacts. Conducted in spring and summer of 2003 by the University of Louisville Urban Studies

Institute, the results are drawn from financial data provided by the Airport Authority and airport tenants for the 4th quarter of calendar year 2002. The survey was first conducted in 1986, providing a benchmark from which the University measures the impact of the airport expansion.

Copies of the survey may be obtained by contacting the Louisville Regional Airport Authority’s Public Relations Department at or calling (502) 368-6524.

Growth in Annual State and Local Taxes as a result of the community partnership between the Airport Authority, the City and former County, and the State.