May 17, 2020
Hannibal, MO. – Corey Mehaffy, Executive Director of the Hannibal Regional Economic Development Council (HREDC) announced today that his organization received a Tentative Allocation (TA) Letter form the Missouri Department of Transportation (MODOT). The TA Letter provides authorization to negotiate a consult agreement to provide an Airport Business Plan.
When approved, the grant funds will be allocated to hire a consultant to complete an assessment of the Hannibal Regional Airport. The assessment will include a SWOT analysis to identify the current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats for the airport. The final deliverable will be an Airport Business Plan that identifies key strategies for marketing the airport assets.
In addition, given the proximity to the Lakeside Technology Park, the assessment and business plan will include strategies for marketing the business park including the advantages created for certain industries interested in locating large industrial facilities near a regional airport.
According to Mehaffy, HREDC is seeking proposals from site selection consultants who specialize in airport assessments and business plans. Mehaffy added, “We received a list of consulting firms that provide this type of assistance. from the City of Hannibal’s airport consulting firm Jviation, Inc. We sent an RFP to those firms and are awaiting the final proposals now. Once a firm is chosen, we will begin work on the SWOT analysis as soon as possible given the current Coronavirus restrictions.”
Mehaffy indicated that the MODOT grant program provides a 90/10 match. In other words, the MODOT grant will cover 90% of the costs associated with the analysis and business plan. Mehaffy added, “I would like to thank the Hannibal Board of Public Works for their willingness to provide the 10% match to allow us to seek this grant opportunity.”
In addition, Mehaffy thanked Joe Pestka from Jviation for his work to complete and submit the application. “Joe made us aware of this opportunity and prepared the application for us. We appreciate Jviation’s continued work on behalf of the City of Hannibal”, said Mehaffy. Mehaffy also thanked MODOT for the opportunity to receive the grant funds and complete this project.
According to Mehaffy, the Hannibal Regional Airport (William P. Lear Field) is a tremendous asset with a widespread impact. City of Hannibal Director of Central Services Andy Dorian agrees and added, “Each year, thousands of flights come in and out of the Hannibal Airport. Visitors travel to the airport for tourism, personal and business travel. We are blessed to have a quality terminal that includes a conference room, business center, sleeping rooms and more.”
Mehaffy added, “The airport is vital to our economic development efforts in the HREDC Region. It is important that we provide this resource for executive travel for our current employers as well as those we are working to recruit to the area. In addition, we have available land at the airport for aviation and non-aviation related development.”
Mehaffy indicated that preparations are underway for an open house at the airport in the coming months so the public can tour the facilities and learn more about airport operations.
HREDC works to promote financial investment in Hannibal, and Marion and Ralls Counties. For more information on the organization, please visit their website at www.hredc.com.