U.S. Congressman Harold “ Hal” Rogers was in Whitesburg last week to meet with the Letcher County Planning Commission to hear an update on the group’s progress and plans for economic development and tourism in Letcher County.
“ The Letcher County Planning Commission is on the right track,” said Rogers. “You can change your outlook and make great things happen in your community by getting involved. I commend you for being proactive and planning your work and working your plan.”
Rogers has been helping the Planning Commission in its work to try to secure a federal prison for Letcher County.
While in eastern Kentucky on Oct. 19, Rogers also visited the newly formed Southeast Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, made up of eight counties, including Floyd, Johnson, Knott, Lawrence, Letcher, Magoffin, Martin, and Pike. Together, they announced the U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded a Small Community Air Service Development grant to implement a scheduled passenger airline service at the Pikeville-Pike County Regional Airport. The $750,000 Federal Aviation Administration grant will provide a revenue guarantee for a commercial airline service to be established.
“This grant is a big step toward opening greater doors of opportunity for eastern Kentucky,” said Rogers.
“… A scheduled passenger airline service will benefi t economic development, tourism and much more.”
The Small Community Air Service Development Program offers highly competitive grants to small communities across the country where air fares are higher than average and improved service will provide benefits to businesses, educational institutions and other enterprises. The City of Pikeville was one of only 29 communities selected across 22 states to receive this grant. Only three of the awards will assist communities in acquiring scheduled airline service. City and airport leaders are working with L.B. Schmidt and Associates LLC to continue discussions with a commercial carrier.