Saturday, October 1, 2016

4 airlines to make proposals at Boone County Airport

Boone County Airport manager Judy McCutcheon said four airline companies are now scheduled to make proposals to offer essential air service (EAS) from the airport.

The airport has been without a federally subsidized EAS provider since SeaPort Airlines filed for Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy Sept. 27.

The  U.S. Department of Transportation sent out requests for proposals from airlines interested in the subsidized EAS program at Harrison, El Dorado/Camden and Hot Springs in Arkansas, as well as Pendleton, Oregon, and requested proposals be expedited due to the “emergency nature” of SeaPort’s closing.

The first airline to make a proposal will be Boutique Air, which offers round trip flights to Dallas and Atlanta, at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 4, at the airport.

Silver Airways, offering flights to Dallas in a 34-seat aircraft, will make its presentation at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 5, at the airport. McCutcheon said the larger aircraft would require the airport to obtain special certification — a minimum six-month process — and have the Transportation Security Administration on property again.

Southern Air, offering flights to Memphis and Kansas City, will make its presentation at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 11, at the airport.

Air Choice One is the fourth airline currently scheduled for a presentation. It offers flights to St. Louis and officials will be presenting at the airport at 12 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18.

The DOT instructed interested carriers to submit proposals no later than Oct. 12. They were told to prepare proposals with the expectation that it would be their final and only proposals.

McCutcheon said Friday that two other airlines had shown interest, but have not scheduled dates for a presentation. 


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