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Direct Flight To Washington D.C.

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 MOLINE, IL -- Governor Pat Quinn was in Moline today to sign a bill that he says will boost the economy. The bill will bring direct flights from the Quad Cities to Washington D.C.

Quinn says they have a three-year plan to get the flights off the ground, and after that it will be able to sustain itself. The hope is to attract both tourists and businesses to fly. "We know that once we get this direct flight from the Quad Cities all the way to Washington on a regular basis, this will have a market. That's what we believe in."

One of the main reasons for this bill is to support the Rock Island Arsenal and its need for direct flights to the capitol. This reduces the risk of the Arsenal closing. Quinn says it will help keep 7000 jobs on the island and in Illinois.

The Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce is also in support, hoping to bring more tourism to the area. Tara Barney, president, says, "This is a great opportunity to offer a new connection. It will be a hub to Europe as well so we think it will do a number of things, not just to the Arsenal, but also for the main businesses thriving here."

Right now, travelers have a layover in Denver or Dallas just to get to Washington D.C. The bill will eliminate this for at least the next three years.

Avalon Thomas-Roebal, a Moline Resident, says, "Since my mom travels for a living, we usually pick her up. As family, there has been a lot of complications with layovers so it would be beneficial if there was a direct flight. It would make it a lot easier on her as a businesswoman and also as family members."

Governor Quinn says around fifty travelers are expected to use these flights every day. The bill will be funded for three years at 1.5 million dollars per year.

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