May Shines a Spotlight on Aviation in Mississippi

May is Aviation Month in the state of Mississippi. The year 2024 marks the 14th occasion for this recognition of the impact of our state’s airports and aviation industry.

In 2011, the State Legislature established May as Mississippi’s annual Aviation Month through passage of HC 124. The designation highlights airports’ value to the state’s intermodal transportation system and its economy.

“Our airports’ economic contributions in terms of jobs, payroll and operational output, as well as capital improvement expenditures, visitor expenditures and the multiplier impacts resulting from the re-circulation of these initial impacts is significant,” says Mississippi Airports Association President Wes Kirkpatrick. “Several billions of dollars are generated every year. Airports are also vital contributors when it comes to recruiting industry and enhancing the state’s position in the global marketplace.”

Mississippi is home to 80 airports – 74 public and 6 private. Seven offer commercial service. In the most recent economic impact study for the Mississippi Department of Transportation, an economic impact of more than $2.5 billion was revealed, and 20,025 jobs were traced to the state’s aviation sector.

In addition to channeling business travel, tourism and commercial cargo, airports also benefit major state industrial sectors such as agriculture, aerospace manufacturing and oil and gas. They also enhance quality of life through support of emergency services like law enforcement and air ambulance and by supporting military operations and aviation-related education.