WASHINGTON — A new bipartisan bill proposed by Congressman Tom Reed seeks to help smaller airports across the nation, including the one near Jamestown.
Reed’s “Restoring Essential Service to Small Airports Act”, would help smaller but economically essential airports across the country, like the Jamestown Regional Airport, rejoin the Essential Air Service (EAS) program. The bill would also provide a much-needed boost to local economies while guaranteeing access to commercial air service.
“We care about our region’s access to national air travel because working families and businesses depend on the availability of affordable commercial flights,” said Reed. “The Essential Air Service Program must restore its role as a facilitator of air services in communities like Jamestown, New York to ensure the local economy of Western New York is not unfairly left out of new economic development opportunities.”
“The Essential Air Service program is an important part of growing our Chautauqua County Jamestown Airport and breathing new life into the operations,” said Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel. “Small airports like ours are a critical piece of infrastructure for business retention and economic development efforts. Not only is this important for corporate and business travel, but having commercial service available offers a local, no-hassle flying opportunity for our residents and visitors, boosting our tourism and hospitality industry. I thank Congressman Reed for introducing this bill and his continued efforts to get commercial air service back in Chautauqua County through the Essential Air Service program.”
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Essential Air Service (EAS) program provides critical air service to smaller regional airports, connecting local communities to major hubs, and supporting economic growth. In January of 2018, the U.S. Department of Transportation terminated the EAS agreement with the Chautauqua County Jamestown Airport. Many efforts have been made by Chautauqua County government officials, as well as Rep. Reed, to get commercial flight service reinstated.