ADI Providing Financial Info to DOT, Dickten Says

VIENNA TOWNSHIP, Ohio – Aerodynamics Inc. is making “good progress” toward resolving the financial fitness issue raised by the U.S. Department of Transportation last week, the aviation director at Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport said Tuesday.

The federal agency last week requested additional information from the carrier before granting final approval for its certificate permitting service between the Vienna Township airport and Chicago O’Hare International Airport.

Among the information the agency is seeking is third-party verification that the company has the required funds to operate the service. To support its ability to meet the department’s financial fitness test, ADI provided a copy of its air services agreement with Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport. The agreement outlines the $1.2 million revenue guarantee for ADI in its first year as the service is established.

The department advised ADI that it could only use the local share of the grant, $420,000, toward meeting the financial fitness test.

“They are making very good progress on working through this issue on the financial end,” said Dan Dickten, director of aviation at the regional airport, following a meeting of the Western Reserve Port Authority’s aviation committee. The two-county port authority operates the airport.

The committee met for just over two hours Tuesday. About half of the meeting was held in executive session to discuss financial and proprietary information. During the closed-door session, committee members participated in a conference call with an undisclosed party.

Ron Klingle, chairman of the port authority’s board of directors, and John Moliterno, WRAP executive director, referred comments regarding ADI’s status to Dickten.

ADI, which has provided the two other pieces of information the department requested last week, was “very much in belief that” the entire $1.2 million revenue guarantee could be used to count toward its financial fitness, Dickten said.

“That’s not the way it came down, so you can look for that difference to be made up, through the owner, to pass that fitness test, and then ticket sales will start and then we’ll all start flying airplanes,” he said.

When that will happen is up to ADI to say, the airport’s aviation director said. Without the certification in effect, ADI could not load schedules and fares for flights into its reservation platform last night to be displayed Sunday in the Global Distribution System for sales.

ADI officials formally announced the launch of the new service at a press event March 29. Ticket sales had been expected to begin April 4 with flights to begin May 30. ADI most recently had anticipated a June 13 launch date for its daily service following completion of required proving flights.

“We need at least 30 days to sell tickets,” Dickten said.

ADI did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday afternoon.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.