PIERRE, South Dakota — The city of Pierre plans to ask federal regulators to reopen the bidding process for airlines interested in serving South Dakota's capital city under the Essential Air Service subsidy program.
The City Commission in 2014 recommended Aerodynamics Inc. The U.S. Department of Transportation late last month gave the company permission to fly scheduled passenger air service, but not before months of concerns over the carrier's fiscal resources and managerial competence.
Aerodynamics vice president Mickey Bowman told the Capital Journal that the airline still wants to serve Pierre, but Mayor Laurie Gill told the newspaper and KCCR radio that there have been too many issues surrounding the carrier, including a recent bankruptcy filing by the carrier's parent company.
"We're not interested," she said.
The City Commission on Tuesday voted unanimously to seek approval to reopen the bidding process to other airlines.
Great Lakes Airlines continues to fly from Pierre to Denver and Minneapolis, but it is not getting federal subsidies and has sharply reduced flights.