The U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded a Small Community Air Service Development grant to the Tri-Cities Airport (PSC). The $750,000 grant, announced today, will enable the airport to establish a minimum revenue guarantee fund and marketing program to recruit, initiate, and support new air service to Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport (DFW).
DFW is a major gateway for Tri-Cities passengers, providing critical access to destinations to the eastern U.S. as well as to Latin America and the Caribbean. On its own, the Dallas/Ft. Worth area is one of the top-10 most popular destination for Tri-Cities residents, but there has never been service from PSC to any airport in Texas. Buck Taft, Airport Director, hopes this grant will change that.
“We are so excited to receive this grant and jump-start our acquisition of nonstop service to Dallas/Ft. Worth,” Taft shared. “We would like to thank Representative Dan Newhouse for his unwavering belief in our airport, as well as Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, for ensuring that Tri-Cities Airport continues to remain an important part of our state’s aviation system.”
“Local airports spur a significant amount of economic development throughout our district and provide a steady source of income for our communities,” said Rep. Newhouse in a statement. “This grant is a substantial federal investment that will help our community to continue to grow and thrive.”
The Small Community Air Service Development Program is a federal grant program designed to help communities address air service issues by supporting locally proposed solutions to deficiencies. In this case, the grant money will establish a minimum guaranteed profit margin for the new route, which minimizes an airline’s risk in starting the PSC-DFW service. This federal grant will help the airport attract new service but is not a guarantee that an airline will fly the route. “This is the first step in the process,” Taft continued. “We will begin working on this opportunity immediately and hope to offer nonstop service to Dallas, Ft. Worth, and beyond, as soon as possible.”
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