By Nevonne Mcdaniels / The Wenatchee World
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Next stop, San Francisco.
Pangborn Memorial Airport has received a $750,000 federal grant to help establish nonstop air service to the Bay Area. The grant award from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Small Community Air Service Development Program was announced Monday by U.S. Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray.
Both senators wrote letters of support to U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao expressing strong support for the application.
Cantwell serves on the Senate Aviation Subcommittee and Murray is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee.
“I want to thank Senators Cantwell and Murray and other delegation members for their enthusiastic support for our grant application,” said Port of Chelan County Commission President Rory Turner. “USDOT’s approval of this application is a great day for the Wenatchee region. Air service to the San Francisco Bay area will create wonderful new opportunities for high-tech business development and expanded tourism.”
The grant application required a $400,000 match from the local community. Those funds were raised from more than 100 local pledgers during a campaign last year.
The idea is to use the funds to offset costs if ticket sales do not cover expenses during the first two years, reducing the risks for an airline that would be investing up to $8 million during the two-year startup.