Jackson, Miss. A study by state transportation officials shows Mississippi's 73 airports generate more than $2.5 billion annually in economic activity.
Melinda McGrath, executive director of the Mississippi Department of Transportation, over 20,000 jobs can be traced to the aviation industry which representing nearly $722 million in total annual wages.
McGrath says the state's eight commercial service airports accommodate over 1.1 million passengers annually.
They are the Golden Triangle Regional in Columbus/West Point/Starkville, Greenville Mid-Delta, Gulfport-Biloxi International, Hattiesburg-Laurel Regional, Jackson-Medgar Wiley Evers International, Key Field in Meridian, Tunica Municipal and Tupelo Regional.
There are 65 smaller, general aviation airports across Mississippi. Officials say the airports support local business and industry.