18 March, 2020

US boutique regional airline in desperate bid for financial support.

The boss of the boutique regional US airline, Silver Airways,  has issued a letter to politicians and the US federal government begging for critical and immediate financial aid required in order for the airline to survive the most dire crisis the industry has faced since 9/11.

Chief Executive Officer Steve Rossum sent the letter to U.S. Department of The Treasure Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin, U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao, Florida State Senator Marco Rubio, Florida State Senator Rick Scott and Florida Representative Debbie Wasserman-Schultz as the downturn in business has left the airline teetering on the brink of collapse.

The letter is reproduced below in full.

Re: Silver Airways Requires Financial Assistance

Dear Secretaries Mnuchin and Chao, Senators Rubio and Scott, and Representative Wasserman-Schultz:

On behalf of the 1,000 dedicated and hardworking aviation professionals of Silver Airways (based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida) and our subsidiary Seaborne Airlines, I am writing to enlist your assistance by way of potential aid noted by President Trump, Vice President Pence and Secretary Mnuchin that would provide significant financial assistance to commercial airlines in order to continue providing critical air transportation in the face of COVID-19. Immediate and direct assistance is both respectfully requested and required.

Our passenger bookings have dropped dramatically over the past month and we are experiencing an even greater and unprecedented decline in forward bookings each day and ever-increasing cancellations as citizens and visitors are encouraged not to travel. We had expected to carry over 1,000,000 passengers in 2020, but expect to fall far short of that target.

As an American regional airline that services the entire State of Florida, the Bahamas and the Caribbean, our airline and employees have already faced – and are continuing to recover from – numerous recent disasters of historic magnitude, including Hurricanes Maria, Irma and Dorian.

The jobs and livelihood of our loyal employees and passengers we provide air transportation for, including military, leisure and business travelers throughout the Southeast and Caribbean from our gateways in Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa, San Juan, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, are gravely at risk. In addition, we provide important service to key military markets, including Pensacola, Florida; Huntsville, Alabama; and Charleston, South Carolina, among others. And we provide valuable and consumer-friendly connecting service to our destinations from many of America’s most important passenger airlines, including United, JetBlue, American and Delta.

On behalf of Silver Airways’ 1,000 employees and hundreds of thousands of customers we serve annually, we are in dire need of any assistance you can provide that will allow us to continue flying and providing the safe, reliable air transportation that is critical to the Southeastern U.S., Bahamas and the Caribbean. We hope and trust you can be in a position to support this need.

Respectfully yours,

Steven A. Rossum

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