- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 2, 2015

TUPELO, Miss. (AP) - The Tupelo Airport Authority has recommended that Corporate Flight Management provide air service in Tupelo.

The company has proposed 30 round-trip flights a week between Tupelo and Nashville on twin-engine planes. Committee members said Tuesday that was the deciding factor for their recommendation.

The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reports (https://bit.ly/1lWYiP9) the city is submitting its letter of recommendation to the U.S. Department of Transportation, which must give its final stamp of approval.

“We made a good step in the right direction with who we recommended,” said Fred Cook, the chairman of the airport board. “We think we picked somebody who will be beneficial to the community.”

CFM said it could begin service 60 to 90 days after DOT gives its blessing.



Agency spokeswoman Caitlin Harvey said, “The latest the order could go public is mid-January. However, we know the communities are anxious to get new air service, and we will do everything we can to get the order out sooner.”

CFM will use Jetstream 31/32 planes, which will have a pilot and a first officer. The pressurized cabin can fly at 25,000 feet, allowing it to fly above most bad weather.

“We will wait on the process, and once DOT’s makes the decision, we’ll get to work,” said Allen Howell, CFM’s president.

The airline, which has been in business since 1982, is the largest operator of Jetstream turboprop planes in the country. The company is also an aircraft management and charter, and owns two fixed-based operations in the Nashville area. CFM current has six Jetstreams in its inventory, but also has Challenger, Learjet, Hawker Beechcraft and Cessna business jets in its fleet.

While the Jetstreams can accommodate 19 passengers, the company will reconfigure them to fly nine for its Tupelo service.

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Information from: Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, https://djournal.com

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