The US Department of Transportation (DOT) will terminate the essential air service (EAS) subsidy at Jamestown, NY, effective January 16, 2018, due to the airport significantly exceeding the USD200 per passenger subsidy cap.

Jamestown, NY is currently served by Southern Airways Express (9X, Memphis Int'l). The airline has been awarded a two-year EAS contract from October 1, 2016, through September 30, 2018, for 24 weekly round trips to Pittsburgh Int'l for a subsidy of USD2.14 million. The contract will now be terminated early, although the DOT noted that the airline can continue to serve Jamestown without a subsidy. Southern Airways Express is the only scheduled operator at Jamestown.

The DOT established that in the fiscal year 2016 the per passenger subsidy at the airport amounted to USD460, more than double the legal cap of USD200. On top of that, the airport only saw an average of seven enplanements per day, less than the required ten. The DOT noted that the airport is located only 76 driving miles away from Buffalo and 61 driving miles away from Erie, which is one of the reasons why it is not able to sustain higher passenger traffic.

"The community would have to generate 10,136 total passengers to get under the subsidy cap, a level not attained since 2005 when it was served by Colgan Air to Pittsburgh," the DOT stated.

The DOT simultaneously granted a total of twenty-six communities a waiver from either the subsidy cap or the enplanements limit and allowed EAS subsidies to continue at those airports.

Macon, GA, Pueblo, CO, Altoona, PA, Du Bois, PA, Franklin, PA, and Victoria, TX have been granted a waiver from both requirements.

El Centro Imperial Country, CA, Muscle Shoals, AL, Pendleton, OR, Salina, KS, Tupelo, MS, Bradford, PA, Alamosa, CO, Clarksburg, WV, Fort Dodge, IA, Hagerstown, MD, Jackson, TN, Johnstown, PA, Kearney, NE, Lancaster, PA, Mason City, IA, Owensboro, KY, Parkersburg, WV, Prescott, AZ, Scottsbluff, NE, and Vernal, UT have been granted a waiver from the subsidy cap requirement.

The waivers apply to the fiscal year 2016 and all communities are expected to be compliant for the fiscal year 2017, which ended September 30, 2017, the DOT noted.