Bowling Green airport aims for commercial airline

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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — Airport officials in Bowling Green are still aiming to lure a commercial airline to the field even though the facility lost out on funds that would have moved them closer to the goal.

Gov. Steve Beshear vetoed $750,000 in funding for the airport on Friday. The governor's veto message said while there's limited funds in the Aviation Economic Development fund, the project is worthy and could be financed at a later time.

Bowling Green-Warren County Regional Airport spokesman Rob Barnett said not having the funds reduces the airport's capability to attract airlines.

Barnett told WBKO-TV in Bowling Green (http://bit.ly/1iqKmmD ) that the cost of doing business with regional airlines is rising because many regional jets are being retired because of age and fuel consumption issues.

Barnett says because the State and House approved the funding, he was surprised when Beshear vetoed it.

"We would be bringing those tax dollars that are currently being spent in Tennessee back across the state line and back into Kentucky_- be it rental cars, ticket purchases, passenger facility charges," Barnett said.

Barnett said there's a need for a commercial airline in the area, as more than 700,000 tickets were purchased in the 10-county region last year.

"We certainly were very close to getting an airline. We're about two steps behind that now and we'll find a way to move forward," Barnett said.

Barnett says he'll continue working with the city and state representatives to convince Beshear to allow for the funding and get those flights here.

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Information from: WBKO-TV, http://www.wbko.com

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