Over the next four weeks, Business Beat will be airing the remaining pieces of the Harvest Public Media series called America’s Big Beef: An Industry In Transition.
To kick off the series, we have to go back 150 years when Abraham Lincoln established the land-grant colleges where research could be done to help the common man. But Peggy Lowe of Harvest Public Media reports that today public colleges in the top five beef-producing states are now often working for big business.
Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid says he wants to continue the work he's begun on projects such as the Columbia Regional Airport's expansion. Pictured, McDavid makes an announcement about the airport, last March.
Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid ushered in the start of flight service between Columbia and Orlando at a ribbon cutting ceremony yesterday (Tuesday). The addition could eventually pave the way to additional Frontier Airlines offerings in the years to come.
According to Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid, the regional airport is well on its way of achieving his goal of 40 percent market share of mid-Missouri travelers, despite the recent announcement that Delta Air Lines would be ending service out of Columbia.
Since 2000, airlines have come and gone at Columbia Regional Airport (COU), changing in the number of passengers passing through the airport. This graph shows the total number of passengers who arrived or departed on commercial aircraft at COU since 2000.
Click on a letter to see which airlines came or went at that particular time. All numbers and events took place during the month listed, although the graph will denote that time as the first of the month. Use the scrollbar at the bottom to change the view of the graph.
The Columbia City Council held a special meeting Friday to officially introduce a potential agreement with American Airlines. The meeting was adjourned after four minutes, but the short meeting could expedite the process of Columbia Regional Airport beginning to offer flights to Chicago and Dallas. Mayor Bob McDavid says these flights would benefit MU and businesses in Columbia.
"I like to say that on the coast we’re known as ‘fly over country,'" McDavid said. "Well we want to be known as ‘fly into country.’”
The Jefferson City Council agreed to provide the Columbia Regional Airport with $100,000 to help attract more airline services.
City Councilman Ralph Bray says Columbia has approached a number of cities in mid-Missouri for help in its attempt to bring a third airline to the airport.
“Well, it’s very, very exciting," Bray says. "Columbia has done a lot of work for the past couple of years or so, I believe, in studying the issue of providing greater air transportation and that would allow for international connections.”
Mayor Bob McDavid says he now has secured $3 million in pledges to attract a new airline to the Columbia Regional Airport. Roughly half of the money comes from the city. The rest is from private business interests, the Boone County Commission and MU.
McDavid says the new destinations will be big boost for businesses in Columbia, but also for people connected to the University of Missouri
The Columbia Hospitality Association says it’s concerned with a proposed lodging tax increase. The tax, which would increase current lodging taxes by three to seven percent, would help fund improvements to the terminal at Columbia Regional Airport. President of CHA, Heather Hargrove says that bearing the burden of restructuring or building a new airport terminal is not fair to other industries, the lodging industry in particular.
The University of Missouri football team will host its first Southeastern Conference game on Saturday night, but Delta Airlines is preparing for the occasion as well.
Delta has added an extra, one-time direct flight from Atlanta’s Hartsfield Jackson International Airport to Columbia Regional Airport on Saturday, ahead of Missouri’s matchup with the University of Georgia. An extra, nonstop flight returning to Atlanta has also been scheduled for Sunday morning.
The flights are in addition to the regular, daily flights between the airports that began in June.
A new report shows Columbia could seek voter approval to raise the hotel tax to pay for a new terminal at Columbia Regional Airport.
Cities like Columbia are authorized to impose a hotel tax of up to 7 percent to fund the "promotion, operation and development of tourism." The report also says the city could also legally levy a fee on each occupied hotel room. Kansas City has such a fee, charging hotels and motels $1.50 per occupied room.
The Columbia Regional Airport will offer nonstop flights to and from Orlando, Florida, beginning November 20. Frontier Airlines will fly 138 passengers directly between the Columbia Regional Airport and the Orlando International Airport in Florida on the Airbus 319. Mayor Bob McDavid told reporters at a press conference Thursday that the new route will increase the airport’s passenger traffic by 27 percent.
Beginning in September, most flights from Columbia Regional Airport will fly to Atlanta, rather than Memphis.
Currently, Delta Air Lines offers one daily flight to Atlanta and the rest of the flights go to Memphis.
Delta said Monday that starting Sept. 5, the morning flight Sunday through Friday will go to Memphis, while the midday and evening flights will go to Atlanta. On Saturdays, the morning and afternoon flights will go to Atlanta.
Columbia Regional Airport is starting its daily, non-stop service to Atlanta one week from today. The University of Missouri believes the new flight could open up opportunities for future enrollment. MU Senior Associate Director of Admissions Chuck May says the flight offers a direct connection to one of the busiest airports in the world.
The head of a Columbia Chamber of Commerce task force trying to find ways to improve air travel in Mid-Missouri says it will consider a smaller hotel tax increase, now that a larger one has appeared to stall. Greg Steinhoff says hotel owners in Columbia weren’t thrilled with the idea of a 3 percent increase to the hotel tax, with the proceeds to be used for airport upgrades. But now that an organization representing those owners has said it would support a 1 percent hotel tax increase, Steinhoff says his task force will try to figure out how far that money would go.