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.
Mayor Bob McDavid introduces the new Frontier Airlines route at a press conference at Columbia City Hall on August 16. (Behind McDavid, from left) Mike Matthes, Dan Atwell, Greg Steinhoff, John Glascock and Don Elliot.
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.