MOLINE -- Delta Air Lines will provide mainline service to the Quad City International Airport beginning June 10, offering room for 56 more passengers than its current 6 a.m. flight to Atlanta.
Director of Aviation Bruce Carter, making the announcement this morning during a meeting of the Metropolitan Airport Authority board, said this is the first time Delta has offered mainline service in Moline.
Both the 6 a.m. flight to Atlanta and the return flight leaving Atlanta at 9:21 p.m., will be made with an A-319 Airbus, which seats 126 passengers, 12 of those in first class. The Delta Connection aircraft in use on the flight now seats 70 passengers.
Mr. Carter said the 6 a.m. flight is most in demand and this is an opportunity for the community to show Delta it can support larger aircraft.
Delta plans to offer mainline service through August and Mr. Carter said he will continue to lobby the airline to maintain mainline service into the future.
"This is a very exciting day," he said.
Delta also serves the Quad Cities with connecting flights to Detroit and Minneapolis-St. Paul. Mr. Carter said he would welcome mainline service to those cities, too.
Airlines are phasing-out smaller aircraft, Mr. Carter said. Later this week, Allegiant will begin using a 156-seat Airbus for service between Moline and Phoenix/Mesa.
In other business, the board approved a 3 percent general wage increase for Mr. Carter and 13 non-union management and administrative employees. The board also approved a 3 percent raise for 12 supervisors and full- and part-time employees working for Airport Services, LLC.
The raise takes effect May 5.Mr. Carter said the managers and employees have not had a wage adjustment since July 2010.
The wage increases will cost $42,000 a year, he said.
In mid-January, the board approved a five-year contract with its union workers. It calls for theAmerican Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 3744 to get a 2 percent annual wage increase each year of the contract through June 30, 2017.
Today is Thursday, April 24, the 114th day of 2014. There are 251 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: We learn that it is a contemplation to start a paper mill in Rock Island during the summer by a gentleman from the East. 1889 -- 125 years ago: The gates of Oklahoma were swung open at noon today, and a throng of more than 30,000 settlers started over its soil. 1914 -- 100 years ago: The Iowa Coliseum Co. was incorporated with $40,000 capital and planned a building on 4th Street between Warren and Green streets in Davenport. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Plans are being discussed for resurfacing the streets in the entire downtown district of Rock Island. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Some 45 jobs will be created at J.I. Case Co.'s Rock Island plant in a expansion of operations announced yesterday afternoon at the firm's headquarters in Racine, Wis. 1989 -- 25 years ago: Gardeners and farmers cheered, but not all Quad-Citians found joy Saturday as more than an inch of rain fell on the area. Motorists faced dangerous, rain-slick roads as the water activated grease and grime that had built up during dry weather.