Work Started on Next Year's Contract with DAC

The current contract between Sheridan's Critical Air Service Team and Denver Air Connection will expire on June 30, and work has already started on a new contract.

That's according to Sheridan County Airport Manager John Stopka.

Stopka said by the end of this year, enplanements will probably total between 9,100 and 9,200. He said although that's short of the 10,000 enplanements CAST and the airline hoped to have by year's end, it's a great number for Denver Air Connection's first full year of service in Sheridan County. He said the 10,000 enplanements number will be the goal for next year.

What makes 10,000 a target number is federal funding. The county airport would receive $1 million if enplanements meet the 10,000 number. Falling short qualifies the airport for only $150,000 in federal funds. Stopka said the new contract would also be for a year, from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018. He explained why the work has to start early.

Stopka said the new contract will include Riverton, and officials there are going through the same preparations at this time. He said CAST isn't sure at this time what the minimum revenue guarantee will be for the coming year. He said Denver Air Connection is still working on their costs. The DAC jets can carry up to 30 passengers, and Stopka said there have been several full flights this year. He said to date, the air service has maintained more than 99 percent completed flights and more than 95 percent of flights arriving on time.