Local News

Midway Airlines Receives Federal Bailout Money

Posted December 3, 2001

— Midway Airlines has been approved for federal bailout money and hopes to resume flying by Dec. 19.

Midway CEO Bob Ferguson said he found out Friday morning from the U.S. Department of Transportation that the company had been approved to receive $10.08 million in bailout money.

Ferguson said he expects the money to arrive either Friday or Monday.

Airline officials hope to resume operations in and out of the Raleigh-Durham area by Dec. 19. They plan on using four 737 planes and eventually add two more by March.

Ferguson said he hopes to hire 250 workers, which counts 75 employees that are currently employed by the airline, in December. He said the hiring process had started approximately two weeks ago in anticipation of receiving the bailout money.

Officials said employees who were laid off by the airline and want to come back to the company will have priority over others. Officials also plan to start advertising and promotions immediately.

Flight schedules, fares and the cities Midway plans to fly to will be announced next week.

U.S. Rep. Bob Etheridge (D-Lillington), who has worked closely with Midway, the Department of Transportation and members of the North Carolina congressional delegation to secure the grant, praised the airline and Ferguson for moving to hire back hundreds of laid-off employees before Christmas.

"This is great news for Midway and its employees, but it is also great news for the Triangle region that has been hit hard by layoffs and the slumping economy," Etheridge said. "Getting Midway back in the air will be a big boost to area businesses and is a great Christmas gift to the hundreds of Midway employees who are eager to get back on the job.

"This is an important day for this corporate citizen and its employees and is a big shot in the arm for the local economy," Etheridge said.

The bankrupt company quit flying altogether on Sept. 12, the day after the terrorist attacks.

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