Dial Sends Letter to Senator Shelby, Says Alabama Space Authority Working to Identify Location for a New Space Port

By Gerald Dial

Dial Sends Letter to Senator Shelby, Says Alabama Space Authority Working to Identify Location for a New Space Port

Montgomery, Ala. – State Senator Gerald Dial (R-Lineville) has sent a letter to U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) informing him that the Alabama Space Authority is beginning work to identify the location for a space port in Alabama, in an effort to position the state as a leader in the burgeoning space flight industry. A space port is a site for launching and receiving space craft; between 1996 and 2017, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) licensed ten space ports in seven states. Dial was the sponsor of the 2017 legislation that established the Space Authority, on which he serves as chairman.

In the letter to Shelby, Dial cites the existence of the Marshall Space Flight Center, Redstone Arsenal, and the Maxwell Air Force Base as reasons why Alabama can be a leader in the commercial and military space flight industry.

The Space Authority held its inaugural meeting on March 16 at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, and heard from Glenn Rizner, chief of staff for the FAA’s Commercial Space Transportation Office, on the FAA’s application process for space launch site licenses.

On Wednesday afternoon, Dial said Senator Shelby has been very supportive of  the Space Authority’s work.

“Senator Shelby has been a tremendous ally and friend of Alabama’s aerospace industry, and this letter is meant to update him and his office on our efforts to first identify a prime location for the space port, and then to move forward with construction plans,” Dial said. “Senator Shelby was just named chairman of the U.S. Senate’s appropriations committee, and that position certainly increases his opportunities to represent Alabama’s interests, including our push to become a leader in the commercial and military space flight industry.”

Gerald Dial represents District 13 in the Alabama State Senate, which includes all or parts of Chambers, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Lee, and Randolph counties.