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County commissioners laud new airport service

The Lycoming County commissioners took care of several pieces of business at their Thursday meeting, but also took time to laud new airline service to the Williamsport Regional Airport.

It was announced this week that American Airlines will fly to and from Charlotte, North Carolina, beginning Aug. 18.

“When we heard that they are flying to Charlotte, that was welcome news,” Commissioner Tony Mussare said.

Area residents had most recently lost confidence with the airlines, he noted, especially with regard to news earlier this month that flights from the airport to Philadelphia would be reduced from two to one a day until May.

Philadelphia has remained the only city to and from the local airport.

Charlotte offers about 90 connections to domestic destinations.

Initially, American Airlines will schedule two flights a day to and from Charlotte.

American Airlines will end its Philadelphia-Williamsport flights Aug. 17.

Commissioners were quick to remind the public the importance of taking advantage of the new and improved flight service from the local airport.

American Airlines has pledged to retain the Charlotte service if it generates a minimum of 66,000 annual on and off passengers.

Commissioners Mussare and Scott Metzger said it’s important that the service be marketed in a positive manner.

“We need to use the airport,” Commissioner Rick Mirabito said. “I have no doubt we’ll make 66,000.”

In other matters, commissioners approved the hiring of Jeffrey Hutchins as director of Public Safety at an annual salary of $80,000. He replaces John Yingling who retired in December.

Corey W. Brewer was approved as a part-time driver for the Pre-Release Center at $12.96 per hour. Brewer is not to work more than 1,000 hours annually.

In another personnel matter, commissioners eliminated the part-time Planning and Community Development Special Projects position.

To address landfill needs, commissioners voted to purchase a gas extraction monitor at a cost of $12,683 and heavy equipment tires for $17,269.

A $10,000 grant agreement with Lycoming County Historical Society for monitoring and securing county historical information was approved.

Commissioners issued a proclamation recognizing Annabel Miller for her many years of service with the county.

Miller, who recently passed away, served as register and recorder from 1992 to 2015.

Prior to that, she worked as deputy register of wills and as a typist for the county.

Commissioners will meet next 10 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25 at Executive Plaza, 330 Pine St., Williamsport.

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