LA mayor supports Jacksonville flight, Brown says
Jacksonville Business Journal
by Sarah Mueller, Reporter
Thursday, April 12, 2012

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa is joining the effort to establish a direct flight from Jacksonville to LA, Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown said.

The direct flight for Jacksonville International Airport was just one issue discussed by Brown and leaders from the Jacksonville Aviation Authority, the Jacksonville Port Authority, the Jacksonville Transportation Authority, economic development advocates and top business executives at Thursday’s quarterly meeting of the Jacksonville International Business Coalition at City Hall. Other topics included international trade, foreign investment and strong local industries.

Villaraigosa said he would help Jacksonville get a direct flight and he was serious, Brown said.

“He said, 'Your airport needs these direct flights to LAX [Los Angeles International Airport].' "

The route is one of the aviation authority’s top targets and having the LA mayor’s support will help, said Rosa Beckett, director of marketing and business development for Cecil Airport. The challenge is fuel cost.

JAA is talking to several airlines, Barbara Halverstadt, manager of development and marketing for JAA, said in an earlier interview.

Jacksonville had nonstop service to Los Angeles from Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) for nearly a year until it was dropped in December 2007 because of a lack of demand, a Delta spokeswoman said at the time.