By MATTHEW KENWRIGHT
The Hays Regional Airport will have a new carrier starting July 1 until July 31, 2016.
Despite the fact SkyWest Airlines proposed a more expensive Essential Air Service bid than Great Lakes Airlines, the U.S. Department of Transportation declined to renew Great Lakes' contract, said I.D. Creech, City of Hays director of Public Works.
"The city is pleased to be welcoming SkyWest as their service provider," Creech said Friday.
There will be 12 nonstop round trips per week to Denver. SkyWest will operate as United Express.
Other cities' boarding numbers have increased after they received regional jet service, and city staff hopes the Hays airport will experience the same change, Creech said.
The Hays Area Chamber of Commerce, Hays Medical Center and the Ellis County Coalition for Economic Development had pledged to subsidize the gap between the two airlines' bids, but their support will not be necessary.
City staff will speak with SkyWest early next week to establish the transition phases.