A $200,000 grant will help provide fuel, power and safer operations in response to fires and disaster at Tenterfield.
The Friends of Tenterfield Aerodrome group which operate at the airstrip will be the beneficiary of the funding from the NSW Clubgrants program.
The funding is being supplemented by local businesses and the community who have made a commitment to contribute a further $76,000.
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It will help provide a concrete hardstand for helicopter operations, sealed taxiways, standalone solar power with a backup generator, apron lighting and fuel availability.
The Tenterfield Aerodrome is located 15 km north of the Tenterfield township and has a 1270 metre grass runway.
"The recent fires that swept through the region confirmed the need for upgrades to local disaster-readiness facilities," Friends of Tenterfield Aerodrome president Rob Evans said.
"The project will enable safer aircraft and helicopter operations and faster response times during disasters and emergencies.
"This project will result in a significantly increased ability to save lives, property, livestock, infrastructure, and native plants and animals threatened by bushfires in the Tenterfield region.
"Bushfires and other weather-related emergencies appear to be becoming more frequent and intense, this funding is very timely."
On October 18, helicopters contracted to the RFS started aerial firefighting operations from the aerodrome.
Over the next fortnight, the number of helicopters using the aerodrome battled fires encroaching on nearby Jennings and Wallangarra townships, caused evacuations and resulted in the loss of several houses and significant loss of habitat, livestock and farm infrastructure.
Intensive aerial operations and use of the airstrip continued until November 6.
Mr Evans said a significant finding from operating at the Tenterfield base was that the water application was at least five teams greater than it would have been from Glen Innes, saving an additional $60,000 per day.
He said there were other factors that highlight the need for the facility to be used in future fires.
"It (the Tenterfield base) has a wind direction indicator and good obstacle clearance in multiple directions, allowing pilots a choice of approach paths to suit wind, obstacles and other aircraft," he said.
"This provides increased safety compared to landing sites that are unprepared, in built up areas, or surrounded by obstacles such as trees, houses, power lines and aerials.
"There are no restrictions to daylight operations and few residences in the vicinity."
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