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Danielator36
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The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 6:06 pm

What do you guys think the future of the Essential Air Service is, should it not be cut?


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut. I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it. Maybe something more like the SCASDP. For example, there are tons of communities that lost service in the 2000s during the recession but have recently bounced back, but airlines often won't try them because of lack of new and solid data.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 6:24 pm

Danielator36 wrote:
For example, there are tons of communities that lost service in the 2000s during the recession but have recently bounced back, but airlines often won't try them because of lack of new and solid data.


Now that several jet carriers are getting into EAS, that is happening a fair amount. Places like COU and MHK now succeed without subsidy.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
MIflyer12
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 6:42 pm

Danielator36 wrote:


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut.


How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.

Danielator36 wrote:
I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it.


How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.
 
FLALEFTY
Posts: 391
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:33 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 7:34 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
Danielator36 wrote:


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut.


How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.

Danielator36 wrote:
I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it.


How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.


This is true. There are always anti-EAS people (The Boyd Group is one) who call for ending the program. However, these arguments don't seem to penetrate too deep into the halls of Congress. Also, compared to the massive deficits that our government seems comfortable with, cutting EAS would only have a very minor, mostly-symbolic impact on the deficit, but would certainly threaten the future politcal careers of congresspersons in rural districts.

Now having said all that, I wonder if the business model of providing passenger service to EAS airports could use a tweak. Even if they cut scheduled passenger service to these EAS stations, companies still will contract with FedEx to provide scheduled cargo service. What if these contractors upgraded some of their FedEx planes so they could run a combi interior layout? The money would be in the freight so passengers would be a bonus. An ATR combi with freight in the front and a 18-19 passenger section in the back would work.
 
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Danielator36
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Posts: 44
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 9:12 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
Danielator36 wrote:


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut.


How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.

Danielator36 wrote:
I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it.


How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.


Well first I think that the stupid-high per-passenger subsidy will be lowered at least enough to cut some of the smaller communities, due to political pressure should it continue.

And also there are plenty of cities that were cut because of the 70-mile rule but could fill plenty more planes than many of the current communities, Youngstown, OH and Lafayette, IN are just a couple examples. For airports like the one in Lafayette which had air service for most of their history but lost it in the 2000s, I've always thought that the EAS could play some role in restoring those airports.
 
32andBelow
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 9:24 pm

I think they should just bid out the whole package to a few companies and bring the cost down.
 
Cubsrule
Posts: 13841
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 12:13 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 9:29 pm

Danielator36 wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Danielator36 wrote:


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut.


How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.

Danielator36 wrote:
I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it.


How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.


Well first I think that the stupid-high per-passenger subsidy will be lowered at least enough to cut some of the smaller communities, due to political pressure should it continue.

And also there are plenty of cities that were cut because of the 70-mile rule but could fill plenty more planes than many of the current communities, Youngstown, OH and Lafayette, IN are just a couple examples. For airports like the one in Lafayette which had air service for most of their history but lost it in the 2000s, I've always thought that the EAS could play some role in restoring those airports.


I don’t have understand the case for subsidy at these not-very-isolated airports. If I can fly YNG-ORD for some high fare or drive to CLE/PIT and pay WN prices, how does using YNG make sense?
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
philabos
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sat Jul 20, 2019 10:25 pm

I think the future of EAS is quite secure.
LNS in less than 70 miles from PHL, and of course MDT is just 30 minutes down the road.
We have EAS service BWI, 2 per day, And PIT, 3 per day.
An average of about 1 or 2 passengers per flight.
The local Congressman is a big anti waste spending guy.
Except for......
If we can do it, anyone can.
 
airlineworker
Posts: 83
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2019 1:20 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 12:24 am

Welfare in the sky. A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas. One of many wasteful spending packages under the guise of making everything available to everybody.
 
32andBelow
Posts: 3966
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:54 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 12:52 am

airlineworker wrote:
Welfare in the sky. A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas. One of many wasteful spending packages under the guise of making everything available to everybody.

Do you know how many medivacs there would be to get people into the cities for cancer treatment and things if it wasn’t for EAS.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:08 am

32andBelow wrote:
airlineworker wrote:
Welfare in the sky. A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas. One of many wasteful spending packages under the guise of making everything available to everybody.

Do you know how many medivacs there would be to get people into the cities for cancer treatment and things if it wasn’t for EAS.


Huh? Virtually all EAS cities are within reasonable driving distance of a larger city, and no one with acute medical needs is going by EAS flight now.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
crj900lr
Posts: 452
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:51 am

philabos wrote:
I think the future of EAS is quite secure.
LNS in less than 70 miles from PHL, and of course MDT is just 30 minutes down the road.
We have EAS service BWI, 2 per day, And PIT, 3 per day.
An average of about 1 or 2 passengers per flight.
The local Congressman is a big anti waste spending guy.
Except for......
If we can do it, anyone can.



The EAS service in LNS is on life support. Nobody wants to put in the local share ($$) which is needed. If you want to read all about it look under the Public Polices/Board Meetings section on their web site, the March 7th 2019 special meeting. 1 to 2 pax per flight is not worth the time or money, the resources could be better used elsewhere especially since PHL, BWI and MDT are all relatively close and have more options for passengers.
 
Aliqiout
Posts: 280
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:41 am

Cubsrule wrote:
Danielator36 wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:

How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.



How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.


Well first I think that the stupid-high per-passenger subsidy will be lowered at least enough to cut some of the smaller communities, due to political pressure should it continue.

And also there are plenty of cities that were cut because of the 70-mile rule but could fill plenty more planes than many of the current communities, Youngstown, OH and Lafayette, IN are just a couple examples. For airports like the one in Lafayette which had air service for most of their history but lost it in the 2000s, I've always thought that the EAS could play some role in restoring those airports.


I don’t have understand the case for subsidy at these not-very-isolated airports. If I can fly YNG-ORD for some high fare or drive to CLE/PIT and pay WN prices, how does using YNG make sense?

It is hard to make the case for an airport like YNG. Airports like this get a lot of attention in threads like these, but there many airports that make a lot more sence.

But as for why fly from YNG if it did had service, many people may value driving more than two hours less each trip and avoiding the uncertainties of Pittsburg or Cleveland traffic and TSA lines more than you might. Also many forget to add the higher price of parking, gas, wear and tare, and possible hotel ( probably not applicable for YNG) to the cost comparison for their local airport versus the nearest larger airport.
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:29 am

It would be a lot cheaper to subsidize a van going to the nearest city or airport in most cases. How much does a rural community have to share in the costs of these routes? Obviously if they are not willing to tax themselves at least a little they don't value the service.
Buffet: the airline business...has eaten up capital...like..no other (business)
 
32andBelow
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:12 am

Cubsrule wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
airlineworker wrote:
Welfare in the sky. A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas. One of many wasteful spending packages under the guise of making everything available to everybody.

Do you know how many medivacs there would be to get people into the cities for cancer treatment and things if it wasn’t for EAS.


Huh? Virtually all EAS cities are within reasonable driving distance of a larger city, and no one with acute medical needs is going by EAS flight now.

Almost every flight out of PQI on KS had multiple cancer patients going to BOS for treatment. These people couldn’t drive 7 hours each way several times a month for this.
 
KFTG
Posts: 90
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:21 am

airlineworker wrote:
A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas.

Oh really? Self-sustaining? I must have missed the wheat fields growing in Manhattan.
That burger you ate today? Where did that cattle graze? Central Park?
 
flyboy7974
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:32 am

Does anybody have the monthly numbers and stats for PRC since SkyWest took over service to DEN/LAX from ZK?

I’m interested in seeing how a community of their size rebounds from having marginal service at best to their reliable service now.
 
CairnterriAIR
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 12:18 pm

Just my opinion here.....I believe it should be reserved for communities that are at least three hours away from a serviced airport which are poorly connected via the highway system, and also be able to serve the purpose of being a supply lifeline to the community as well as being a direct connection to big city hospitals for terminally ill patients who’s local hospital cannot handle their case. Villages in Alaska are a perfect example. A city in West Virginia served by regional jets via EAS and is located on an interstate highway directly connecting PIT with a 1:45 drive is wasteful. Especially when the flight is operating regularly with less than 5 or 6 passengers a day who are traveling to leisure destinations.
 
Rdh3e
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 12:29 pm

flyboy7974 wrote:
Does anybody have the monthly numbers and stats for PRC since SkyWest took over service to DEN/LAX from ZK?

I’m interested in seeing how a community of their size rebounds from having marginal service at best to their reliable service now.

At PRC
Q1 of 2018 ZK flew 1,200 passengers at a load factor of 35%
Q1 of 2019 OO flew 6,000 passengers at a load factor of 70%

At SLN
Q1 of 2018 ZK flew 1,300 passengers at a load factor of 46%
Q1 of 2019 OO flew 10,500 passengers at a load factor of 40%

At VEL
Q1 of 2018 4B flew 1,450 passengers at a load factor of 72%
Q1 of 2019 OO flew 2,600 passengers at a load factor of 41%
 
WaywardMemphian
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Joined: Sat Dec 13, 2014 9:05 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:17 pm

FLALEFTY wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Danielator36 wrote:


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut.


How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.

Danielator36 wrote:
I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it.


How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.


This is true. There are always anti-EAS people (The Boyd Group is one) who call for ending the program. However, these arguments don't seem to penetrate too deep into the halls of Congress. Also, compared to the massive deficits that our government seems comfortable with, cutting EAS would only have a very minor, mostly-symbolic impact on the deficit, but would certainly threaten the future politcal careers of congresspersons in rural districts.

Now having said all that, I wonder if the business model of providing passenger service to EAS airports could use a tweak. Even if they cut scheduled passenger service to these EAS stations, companies still will contract with FedEx to provide scheduled cargo service. What if these contractors upgraded some of their FedEx planes so they could run a combi interior layout? The money would be in the freight so passengers would be a bonus. An ATR combi with freight in the front and a 18-19 passenger section in the back would work.


Being From Memphis, I have often wanted to see them try this in the new e-commerce world we now live in we the big push now from two day to next day and same day delivery. Memphis, as a huge logistics center is a prime spot for this kind of hub. Interesting that FedEx and Textron are co-developing a new small prop. That could be the vehicle to drive this type of venture and grow it to the ATR combis. Considering Fed Ex USPS contract and mow shutting off business with Amazon. They could replace lots of semitrucking the mail. FedEx once had a passenger airline thru acquisition and shed it quickly but this was a different time.

Harrison Ark comes to mind. It think it keeps it's EAS service to Memphs in spite of being less than 1 and half hours from XNA and SGF and even shorter to BKG when it has service like it does now with Frontier is because it has corporate offices there with it's trucking operations. If ever a place to try prop combi service, it would be there. Packages to deliver to North Central Ark residents plus a service to their corp. XNA comes ti mind for an ATR combi create a network in Memphis one stop connecting the 75th to 150th enplanement ranked airports. Here i could theoretically see passenger flights like XNA-MEM-GTR becoming feasible just from the SEC athletic connection and MEM being a much more central transfer point. Make the flight be a no plane change option before and during games between all the sports, there's a fair amount of those.
 
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AVLAirlineFreq
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:12 pm

What's interesting to me is what happens to EAS as airlines reduce and eliminate 50-seat jets in the future. Does EAS actually expand to include markets that get dropped by the legacy carriers? What happens to a market like FLO or LYH that now has only 50-seat RJ service on AA but is reasonably close to other larger airports if they can't support larger aircraft? Do we see their local Congressman request expansion of EAS to cover those markets? In most cases the legacy carrier will just reduce the number of flights to accommodate larger RJs, but there will be a few markets that legacy carriers will just drop entirely.
 
DDR
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:02 pm

"What if these contractors upgraded some of their FedEx planes so they could run a combi interior layout? The money would be in the freight so passengers would be a bonus. An ATR combi with freight in the front and a 18-19 passenger section in the back would work."

I just realized that an ATR is in fact a combi aircraft so disregard my previous comment. :rotfl:
Last edited by DDR on Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
Chuska
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:08 pm

I find it very interesting how some EAS routes of 300 miles in length are flown with very slow, single engine, Cessna Caravans. FOD-STL: 331 miles, MCW-ORD: 288miles, IWD-ORD: 333 miles. I don't know what kind off load factor is on these flights but I cant imagine anybody in today's world subjecting themselves to over two hours in a Caravan when you can drive from these cities to airports like DSM, DLH, and even MSP faster than that. I know FOD and MCW once enjoyed DC-9 service by Ozark in the early 80's. In these cases, EAS money would be much better spent having OO use a CRJ on a DEN-FOD-MCW-ORD run or something to that effect.
 
flyboy7974
Posts: 1316
Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2003 4:35 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:03 pm

Rdh3e wrote:
flyboy7974 wrote:
Does anybody have the monthly numbers and stats for PRC since SkyWest took over service to DEN/LAX from ZK?

I’m interested in seeing how a community of their size rebounds from having marginal service at best to their reliable service now.

At PRC
Q1 of 2018 ZK flew 1,200 passengers at a load factor of 35%
Q1 of 2019 OO flew 6,000 passengers at a load factor of 70%

At SLN
Q1 of 2018 ZK flew 1,300 passengers at a load factor of 46%
Q1 of 2019 OO flew 10,500 passengers at a load factor of 40%

At VEL
Q1 of 2018 4B flew 1,450 passengers at a load factor of 72%
Q1 of 2019 OO flew 2,600 passengers at a load factor of 41%


Thank you for sharing, a 500% increase in Q1, I think they’re probably pretty happy with those numbers.
 
airlineworker
Posts: 83
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2019 1:20 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:04 pm

KFTG wrote:
airlineworker wrote:
A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas.

Oh really? Self-sustaining? I must have missed the wheat fields growing in Manhattan.
That burger you ate today? Where did that cattle graze? Central Park?


I was referring to the services provided. To operate an aircraft for 3,4,5 or so people is not a wise use of resources, aircraft, fuel, crews, etc. Airlines need more pilots and to move 50 or more passengers is a better use of limited resources and manpower than moving less then 5 or 10. Just my 2 cents worth.
 
lavalampluva
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:45 pm

Flights from EAS cities of 100-150 miles or less are a waste of money.
Remind me to send a thank you note to Mr. Boeing.
 
Cubsrule
Posts: 13841
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 12:13 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:58 pm

32andBelow wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
Do you know how many medivacs there would be to get people into the cities for cancer treatment and things if it wasn’t for EAS.


Huh? Virtually all EAS cities are within reasonable driving distance of a larger city, and no one with acute medical needs is going by EAS flight now.

Almost every flight out of PQI on KS had multiple cancer patients going to BOS for treatment. These people couldn’t drive 7 hours each way several times a month for this.


You ignore the fact that PQI is more isolated than virtually every EAS city east of the Mississippi and even a decent number (some, like SLN and VEL mentioned in this thread) west of the Mississippi. No one is flying to the nearest large city from BRD or CGI for non-emergent medical care.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
Kilopond
Posts: 454
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:36 pm

There is no such discussion about the equivalent system in the EU/EFTA. Maybe, just because the framing is different: instead of "Essential Air Service" it is called "Public Service Obligation", ("PSO"). Now think of it: who would dare to question a service if it has been labeled as an obligation?
 
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stl07
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Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 5:27 am

Cubsrule wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
airlineworker wrote:
Welfare in the sky. A person moves to Podunk and expects the same benefits as larger selfsustaing metro areas. One of many wasteful spending packages under the guise of making everything available to everybody.

Do you know how many medivacs there would be to get people into the cities for cancer treatment and things if it wasn’t for EAS.


Huh? Virtually all EAS cities are within reasonable driving distance of a larger city, and no one with acute medical needs is going by EAS flight now.

Ever been to Alaska?
Interesting how every thread is spammed with "bring back paid membership, there are too many spammers"
 
32andBelow
Posts: 3966
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:54 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 5:51 am

Cubsrule wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:

Huh? Virtually all EAS cities are within reasonable driving distance of a larger city, and no one with acute medical needs is going by EAS flight now.

Almost every flight out of PQI on KS had multiple cancer patients going to BOS for treatment. These people couldn’t drive 7 hours each way several times a month for this.


You ignore the fact that PQI is more isolated than virtually every EAS city east of the Mississippi and even a decent number (some, like SLN and VEL mentioned in this thread) west of the Mississippi. No one is flying to the nearest large city from BRD or CGI for non-emergent medical care.

So when I discount your argument in 1 second you just say well that doesn’t count. What about Adak Alaska? Or crescent city California. Or Moab.
 
Cubsrule
Posts: 13841
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 12:13 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:30 pm

32andBelow wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
Almost every flight out of PQI on KS had multiple cancer patients going to BOS for treatment. These people couldn’t drive 7 hours each way several times a month for this.


You ignore the fact that PQI is more isolated than virtually every EAS city east of the Mississippi and even a decent number (some, like SLN and VEL mentioned in this thread) west of the Mississippi. No one is flying to the nearest large city from BRD or CGI for non-emergent medical care.

So when I discount your argument in 1 second you just say well that doesn’t count. What about Adak Alaska? Or crescent city California. Or Moab.


Yes. Again, virtually all EAS cities are within driving distance of a decently large city, and no one with emergent medical needs travels by EAS. You haven't disproven either half of that. You pointed out, correctly, that there are some EAS cities where folks with chronic health conditions do fly because of isolation, and I never argued otherwise. But the fact remains that the EAS is not "essential" in virtually all cities east of the Mississippi and even a decent chunk of cities west of the Mississippi. There are cities, mostly west of Interstate 35 and in Alaska, where EAS truly is essential. But those cities comprise neither the majority of EAS routes nor the majority of EAS dollars. What is essential about air service to a place like MKL, which is an hour from Memphis and two from Nashville on a well-maintained interstate?
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
Rdh3e
Posts: 3515
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 2:09 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:36 pm

Kilopond wrote:
There is no such discussion about the equivalent system in the EU/EFTA. Maybe, just because the framing is different: instead of "Essential Air Service" it is called "Public Service Obligation", ("PSO"). Now think of it: who would dare to question a service if it has been labeled as an obligation?

Everyone... Especially in the US. The attitude you will often find from anyone not living in a remote place is: "You chose to live there, you deal with the consequences".

The air service can obviously not be deemed "essential" because these places existed before aircraft, therefore it stands to reason, that the aircraft is not what enables the survival of the community. It does however improve quality of life in these places which perpetuates people choosing to live there and expecting to have that quality of life subsidized by everyone else.
 
drdisque
Posts: 1055
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:57 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 2:19 pm

AVLAirlineFreq wrote:
What's interesting to me is what happens to EAS as airlines reduce and eliminate 50-seat jets in the future. Does EAS actually expand to include markets that get dropped by the legacy carriers? What happens to a market like FLO or LYH that now has only 50-seat RJ service on AA but is reasonably close to other larger airports if they can't support larger aircraft? Do we see their local Congressman request expansion of EAS to cover those markets? In most cases the legacy carrier will just reduce the number of flights to accommodate larger RJs, but there will be a few markets that legacy carriers will just drop entirely.


If AA drops FLO or LYH they are out of luck as no new Non-Alaska airports can be added to the program.

They will have to pony up for the subsidy locally to get a carrier back or service will be lost.

This is what happened in SHR when Great Lakes dropped their unsubsidized service in 2015. The community was left without service for a few months until the community scraped together the funds to get Key Lime Air/Denver Air Connection to start flying SHR-DEN. Surprisingly, that service has seemed sustainable as I haven't really heard a peep about it since it started. DOT says they had 11k enplanements each of the last 2 years. Which isn't shabby for independent service on a 30 seater.
 
sprxUSA
Posts: 217
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 5:17 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 3:19 pm

drdisque wrote:
AVLAirlineFreq wrote:
What's interesting to me is what happens to EAS as airlines reduce and eliminate 50-seat jets in the future. Does EAS actually expand to include markets that get dropped by the legacy carriers? What happens to a market like FLO or LYH that now has only 50-seat RJ service on AA but is reasonably close to other larger airports if they can't support larger aircraft? Do we see their local Congressman request expansion of EAS to cover those markets? In most cases the legacy carrier will just reduce the number of flights to accommodate larger RJs, but there will be a few markets that legacy carriers will just drop entirely.


If AA drops FLO or LYH they are out of luck as no new Non-Alaska airports can be added to the program.

They will have to pony up for the subsidy locally to get a carrier back or service will be lost.

This is what happened in SHR when Great Lakes dropped their unsubsidized service in 2015. The community was left without service for a few months until the community scraped together the funds to get Key Lime Air/Denver Air Connection to start flying SHR-DEN. Surprisingly, that service has seemed sustainable as I haven't really heard a peep about it since it started. DOT says they had 11k enplanements each of the last 2 years. Which isn't shabby for independent service on a 30 seater.


Well Riverton,WY was added to this with SHR, and KG does some SHR-RIW-DEN and back trips, along with some DEN-SHR nonstop runs. However, the state of Wyoming has started their own money pool to contract with a carrier to serve SHR, RIW, Rock Springs, and Gillette to a hub (SLC or DEN). The state went with SkyWest so it would seem KG will be out of SHR in Jan 2020 when their contract expires.
What I do not know is since OO already gets EAS for Rock Springs, is it simply mobey now coming from state or will they compete against themselves?
Gem State Airlines..."we have a gem of an airline"
 
Buddys747
Posts: 285
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2007 6:33 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:09 pm

crj900lr wrote:
philabos wrote:
I think the future of EAS is quite secure.
LNS in less than 70 miles from PHL, and of course MDT is just 30 minutes down the road.
We have EAS service BWI, 2 per day, And PIT, 3 per day.
An average of about 1 or 2 passengers per flight.
The local Congressman is a big anti waste spending guy.
Except for......
If we can do it, anyone can.



The EAS service in LNS is on life support. Nobody wants to put in the local share ($$) which is needed. If you want to read all about it look under the Public Polices/Board Meetings section on their web site, the March 7th 2019 special meeting. 1 to 2 pax per flight is not worth the time or money, the resources could be better used elsewhere especially since PHL, BWI and MDT are all relatively close and have more options for passengers.

As conservative as Lancaster county is, why is there still this service at LNS? What a waste of money when MDT is 30 minutes away.
 
airlineworker
Posts: 83
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2019 1:20 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:35 pm

AVLAirlineFreq wrote:
What's interesting to me is what happens to EAS as airlines reduce and eliminate 50-seat jets in the future. Does EAS actually expand to include markets that get dropped by the legacy carriers? What happens to a market like FLO or LYH that now has only 50-seat RJ service on AA but is reasonably close to other larger airports if they can't support larger aircraft? Do we see their local Congressman request expansion of EAS to cover those markets? In most cases the legacy carrier will just reduce the number of flights to accommodate larger RJs, but there will be a few markets that legacy carriers will just drop entirely.


Don't know about FLO. but LYH is doing well for AA. 4 ERJ-145's and 2 CRJ-7020's to CLT.
 
32andBelow
Posts: 3966
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:54 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:38 pm

Rdh3e wrote:
Kilopond wrote:
There is no such discussion about the equivalent system in the EU/EFTA. Maybe, just because the framing is different: instead of "Essential Air Service" it is called "Public Service Obligation", ("PSO"). Now think of it: who would dare to question a service if it has been labeled as an obligation?

Everyone... Especially in the US. The attitude you will often find from anyone not living in a remote place is: "You chose to live there, you deal with the consequences".

The air service can obviously not be deemed "essential" because these places existed before aircraft, therefore it stands to reason, that the aircraft is not what enables the survival of the community. It does however improve quality of life in these places which perpetuates people choosing to live there and expecting to have that quality of life subsidized by everyone else.

It’s part of the Infrastructure of the company. Some of these towns like liberal Kansas are huge meat production towns which benefits the food supply of the entire country.
 
Rdh3e
Posts: 3515
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 2:09 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:05 am

32andBelow wrote:
It’s part of the Infrastructure of the company. Some of these towns like liberal Kansas are huge meat production towns which benefits the food supply of the entire country.

So you're saying we should just subsidize the service as a form of corporate welfare? They could easily relocate closer to a large airport (like Greeley, CO) if air service is important. The fact that the company is in Liberal in spite of the poor air service means exactly the opposite of what you're saying. It means that air service is NOT a big driver or else they would already be somewhere else.
 
drdisque
Posts: 1055
Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 9:57 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:48 am

sprxUSA wrote:
drdisque wrote:
AVLAirlineFreq wrote:
What's interesting to me is what happens to EAS as airlines reduce and eliminate 50-seat jets in the future. Does EAS actually expand to include markets that get dropped by the legacy carriers? What happens to a market like FLO or LYH that now has only 50-seat RJ service on AA but is reasonably close to other larger airports if they can't support larger aircraft? Do we see their local Congressman request expansion of EAS to cover those markets? In most cases the legacy carrier will just reduce the number of flights to accommodate larger RJs, but there will be a few markets that legacy carriers will just drop entirely.


If AA drops FLO or LYH they are out of luck as no new Non-Alaska airports can be added to the program.

They will have to pony up for the subsidy locally to get a carrier back or service will be lost.

This is what happened in SHR when Great Lakes dropped their unsubsidized service in 2015. The community was left without service for a few months until the community scraped together the funds to get Key Lime Air/Denver Air Connection to start flying SHR-DEN. Surprisingly, that service has seemed sustainable as I haven't really heard a peep about it since it started. DOT says they had 11k enplanements each of the last 2 years. Which isn't shabby for independent service on a 30 seater.


Well Riverton,WY was added to this with SHR, and KG does some SHR-RIW-DEN and back trips, along with some DEN-SHR nonstop runs. However, the state of Wyoming has started their own money pool to contract with a carrier to serve SHR, RIW, Rock Springs, and Gillette to a hub (SLC or DEN). The state went with SkyWest so it would seem KG will be out of SHR in Jan 2020 when their contract expires.
What I do not know is since OO already gets EAS for Rock Springs, is it simply mobey now coming from state or will they compete against themselves?


RKS exited EAS in 2006 when ZK notified the DOT that they'd serve it subsidy-free. All airports in that new Wyoming program are non-EAS. COD and LAR are the only EAS markets in Wyoming, which aren't part of the program (and COD only receives subsidy in the off-season).
 
FlyingElvii
Posts: 330
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:53 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 5:40 am

Danielator36 wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Danielator36 wrote:


I think the intention is good, but a ton of the smaller communities which are close to other airports are gonna be cut.


How is that going to happen? The program is immune from most economic efificiency arguments. A few airports have been cut due to max per-passenger subsidy limits but that's already stupid-high.

Danielator36 wrote:
I'd like to see it turn into more of a program that helps fund communities which can actually reasonably use commercial service but just haven't been able to get it.


How's that? Eligibility is established by presence of regular air service pre-deregulation.

EAS has proven remarkably immune to change. Congresspersons representing rural areas will keep it that way. Little changes around the edges, if anything It's small potato$ in the scheme of the Federal budget.


Well first I think that the stupid-high per-passenger subsidy will be lowered at least enough to cut some of the smaller communities, due to political pressure should it continue.

And also there are plenty of cities that were cut because of the 70-mile rule but could fill plenty more planes than many of the current communities, Youngstown, OH and Lafayette, IN are just a couple examples. For airports like the one in Lafayette which had air service for most of their history but lost it in the 2000s, I've always thought that the EAS could play some role in restoring those airports.

Lafayette was more a victim of it’s University politics management, than the Airlines. The foundation employees did not like competing with those smelly passengers for the best parking spaces, either.

As the longtime ex-airport Director once famously said, “I get paid the same whether an airline flies here or not.” He is long gone now, but his legacy is not. Now that big business is returning, and the city says they want service, they can’t get it. I could tell you stories of what this guy did.

Management at all levels of the University has changed, but that ship has likely sailed, without a big subsidy. This at an airport that went from 4 Airlines to none in just a decade or so.
 
RJNUT
Posts: 1768
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 1999 1:58 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:16 pm

programs like this I like to refer to" nation building" ,not corporate welfare.
 
DakotaFlyer
Posts: 77
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 6:19 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 2:26 pm

BJI is my hometown EAS airport and located approx 2 to 2.5 hours from either GFK, FAR, and DLH. They operate 2x daily to MSP with 50 seat CRJ and an average yearly LF of 75%. . Flying out of BJI is certainly more expensive than other airports, but the 4-hour drive total, free parking, and 10 minute TSA is worth the convenience fee. The only exception is international flights, which are way cheaper directly out of MSP and worth the 4 hours one-way drive time. IMO, in Minnesota, the only questionable EAS community is Thief River Falls, which is an hour away from GFK.
 
User avatar
diverdave
Posts: 688
Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2010 1:00 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 2:27 pm

32andBelow wrote:
Almost every flight out of PQI on KS had multiple cancer patients going to BOS for treatment. These people couldn’t drive 7 hours each way several times a month for this.


Given that PQI has all of 13K passengers per year (36 per day) that must be quite the cancer cluster in that part of Maine.
 
Dominion301
Posts: 2134
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:48 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Tue Jul 23, 2019 3:58 pm

DDR wrote:
"What if these contractors upgraded some of their FedEx planes so they could run a combi interior layout? The money would be in the freight so passengers would be a bonus. An ATR combi with freight in the front and a 18-19 passenger section in the back would work."

I just realized that an ATR is in fact a combi aircraft so disregard my previous comment. :rotfl:


Most of the ATR combis are in Canada as combi champion First Air (soon to be renamed Canadian North) invented the ATR 42 combi and worked with Transport Canada to get it certified. The smallest pax config is 18 seats.

Innovative idea for EAS, but who in the US would have any interest in doing so? The drop in the bucket of additional revenue for FedEx wouldn't make it worthwhile.
 
User avatar
Danielator36
Topic Author
Posts: 44
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:12 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Wed Jul 24, 2019 12:16 am

FlyingElvii wrote:
Lafayette was more a victim of it’s University politics management, than the Airlines. The foundation employees did not like competing with those smelly passengers for the best parking spaces, either.

As the longtime ex-airport Director once famously said, “I get paid the same whether an airline flies here or not.” He is long gone now, but his legacy is not. Now that big business is returning, and the city says they want service, they can’t get it. I could tell you stories of what this guy did.

Management at all levels of the University has changed, but that ship has likely sailed, without a big subsidy. This at an airport that went from 4 Airlines to none in just a decade or so.


Wondering which airport manager you're referring to here?

Robert Stroud, who left in 2000 was always able to maintain air service there. (I'm getting this from an old article I found: https://www.purdue.edu/uns/html3month/2 ... etire.html )
His successor, Betty Stansbury, seems to fit your description better. I remember having seen an article from when American Connection left back in 2004 where she said something along the lines of 'This doesn't change much, this airport mainly serves university students.' She repeated that airline service wouldn't anywhere in the airport's future until just a few months before she left.
 
FlyingElvii
Posts: 330
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 10:53 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Wed Jul 24, 2019 2:30 am

Danielator36 wrote:
FlyingElvii wrote:
Lafayette was more a victim of it’s University politics management, than the Airlines. The foundation employees did not like competing with those smelly passengers for the best parking spaces, either.

As the longtime ex-airport Director once famously said, “I get paid the same whether an airline flies here or not.” He is long gone now, but his legacy is not. Now that big business is returning, and the city says they want service, they can’t get it. I could tell you stories of what this guy did.

Management at all levels of the University has changed, but that ship has likely sailed, without a big subsidy. This at an airport that went from 4 Airlines to none in just a decade or so.


Wondering which airport manager you're referring to here?

Robert Stroud, who left in 2000 was always able to maintain air service there. (I'm getting this from an old article I found: https://www.purdue.edu/uns/html3month/2 ... etire.html )
His successor, Betty Stansbury, seems to fit your description better. I remember having seen an article from when American Connection left back in 2004 where she said something along the lines of 'This doesn't change much, this airport mainly serves university students.' She repeated that airline service wouldn't anywhere in the airport's future until just a few months before she left.

I won’t go into it on a public forum, but she came after.
 
PHLCVGAMTK
Posts: 77
Joined: Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:50 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Wed Jul 24, 2019 5:22 am

Buddys747 wrote:
crj900lr wrote:
philabos wrote:
I think the future of EAS is quite secure.
LNS in less than 70 miles from PHL, and of course MDT is just 30 minutes down the road.
We have EAS service BWI, 2 per day, And PIT, 3 per day.
An average of about 1 or 2 passengers per flight.
The local Congressman is a big anti waste spending guy.
Except for......
If we can do it, anyone can.



The EAS service in LNS is on life support. Nobody wants to put in the local share ($$) which is needed. If you want to read all about it look under the Public Polices/Board Meetings section on their web site, the March 7th 2019 special meeting. 1 to 2 pax per flight is not worth the time or money, the resources could be better used elsewhere especially since PHL, BWI and MDT are all relatively close and have more options for passengers.

As conservative as Lancaster county is, why is there still this service at LNS? What a waste of money when MDT is 30 minutes away.


And if you ask Lancaster which government-supported transportation service matters more to it, the 9X EAS service from LNS, or the 14 daily departures to PHL on Amtrak, each one of which has more seats than a 77W, which do you think everyone picks, whether liberal or conservative? That's a particularly egregious example, but it goes to how transportation policy is thoroughly siloed by mode. Our hub airports carry quadruple the passengers as they did at Deregulation. We can leverage their economies of scale, by feeding them on the ground, but we don't. Obviously that is only optimal when there's close enough proximity and not enough demand for an actual 50-seater flight, but CO figured this out many years ago on ABE-EWR, and unlike a lot that the major airlines do, running a shuttle bus scales very, very far down, very well.

CairnterriAIR wrote:
Just my opinion here.....I believe it should be reserved for communities that are at least three hours away from a serviced airport which are poorly connected via the highway system, and also be able to serve the purpose of being a supply lifeline to the community as well as being a direct connection to big city hospitals for terminally ill patients who’s local hospital cannot handle their case. Villages in Alaska are a perfect example. A city in West Virginia served by regional jets via EAS and is located on an interstate highway directly connecting PIT with a 1:45 drive is wasteful. Especially when the flight is operating regularly with less than 5 or 6 passengers a day who are traveling to leisure destinations.


This criterion strikes me as about right; maybe I would be generous and say only two hours drive time. I would also give specific waivers to towns that have road chokepoints that can close more easily due to weather than an airport, though I suspect that all but one or two of those cases are also in Alaska.
 
frmrCapCadet
Posts: 2987
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 8:24 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Wed Jul 24, 2019 2:32 pm

Alaska has just cut university spending by 40%. No sales tax, no income tax, it does raise the question as to why should US taxpayers support a state whose citizens are unwilling to tax themselves. Note, I raise the question, and would only put the feet (and maybe other parts) of their governing bodies into the proverbial fire. I support the subsidies - but then what am I - a sucker who pays taxes.
Buffet: the airline business...has eaten up capital...like..no other (business)
 
mhkansan
Posts: 852
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2010 9:02 pm

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:55 pm

What is the deal with Joplin? They have now six daily flights to two markets and some flights on large regional jets. I knew there was some issues with the short runway there necessitating the larger aircraft, but now they have a ton of service for an EAS community.
 
sprxUSA
Posts: 217
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 5:17 am

Re: The future of the Essential Air Service

Wed Jul 24, 2019 5:39 pm

frmrCapCadet wrote:
Alaska has just cut university spending by 40%. No sales tax, no income tax, it does raise the question as to why should US taxpayers support a state whose citizens are unwilling to tax themselves. Note, I raise the question, and would only put the feet (and maybe other parts) of their governing bodies into the proverbial fire. I support the subsidies - but then what am I - a sucker who pays taxes.


LOL only an idiot would voluntarily vote to tax themselves. The government will certainly find a way regardless, to get said tax money from their people. Why make it easier for them?
Gem State Airlines..."we have a gem of an airline"

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