Midway CEO: Airline May Fly Again
MORRISVILLE, N.C. (AP) -
Midway Airlines' chief executive officer said he is confident the bankrupt company will get part of a $15 billion federal bailout and could resume flights by late October.
Robert Ferguson, Midway's president and CEO, said he met with North Carolina congressional leaders this week about whether the airline is entitled to grants and loans from the federal government.
Following discussions with U.S. Sens. Jesse Helms and John Edwards and U.S. Reps. David Price and Bob Etheridge, Ferguson said the company could be entitled to as much as $40 million of the bailout money.
``We are going to fly again and carry passengers and serve the community,´´ Ferguson said.
The Morrisville-based airline expects to get $12 million in grants and $28 million in guaranteed loans, Ferguson said.
The federal government established the bailout to help airlines recover from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in Washington and New York.
Ferguson said the company will have to wait until government guidelines on disbursing the money are determined. The Office of Management and Budget has 14 days to set up rules for applying for loans.
Midway filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and laid off 700 employees on Aug. 13. The airline ceased all flights and laid off its 1,700 remaining workers a day after the terrorist attacks.
``It´s fair to say we´re hopeful,´´ Ferguson said. ``I was encouraged by congressional delegates´ support.´´
First, he's "confident" and says "We are going to fly again and carry passengers and serve the community," and then he says "We're hopeful". Is there even a remote possibility that this will happen? Or is it just wishful thinking on his part?