(BIVN) – A resolution that would allow for continued Essential Air Service at the Waimea-Kohala Airport was adopted by the Hawaiʻi County Council on Wednesday.
The council voted to approve Resolution 119-19 during its meeting in Hilo, authorizing the mayor to enter into a multi-year agreement with the United States Department of Transportation.
“It is a contract with the federal government that funding must come out of the community,” Kohala councilman Tim Richards said. “It’s a $400,000 dollar contract where the community must come up with five percent, roughly speaking $20,000 dollars.”
Richards said there is funding in the budget for the next two years, and he said is “working with Senator Schatz’ office to see if we can get this thing redesignated while we go forward.”
“The reason it’s important to keep this going is it literally it takes an act of Congress to have this contract authorized, so if we were to lose it we’d lose a lot for that community as a whole. And we are seeing an increase use of that Airport, so I thought the timing is very good,” Richards said.
“I think we all saw that article in the newspaper the other day,” said council chair Aaron Chung, “I really wanted to congratulate Mr. Richards. I know it’s taken a lot of your time. You’ve absorbed yourself in this matter for the better part of a year, I would think. Congratulations to you and the community.”