Just over a year after quitting Guyana under a cloud, Dynamic Airways, now rebranded as Eastern Airlines LLC, is seeking to re-enter the market and has applied to the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) to operate scheduled services from Saturday.
With plans to ply the Georgetown-New York route once every week, the airline has applied for a three-year licence. But before making a decision, the GCAA is asking members of the public to submit written objections or representations.
“In accordance with the Civil Aviation (Licensing of Air Transport Service) Regulations 2001, The Guyana Civil Aviation Authority hereby advises the public that the following operator has submitted an application for the operation of scheduled air services,” a notice in the Guyana Chronicle said yesterday.
“Member of the public may make representations and/or objections to the said application. Those making representations and or objections shall state the specific grounds on which such are made and shall specify any desired conditions to be attached to the licence if granted,” the notice added.
After serving the Guyana-New York route from the middle of 2014 and with numerous delays, cancellations and even once running off the runway here, Dynamic Airways quit the Guyana market in October last year. Hundreds of persons were left stranded even as the airline assured that they would get refunds on their purchases. Only in May were passengers able to get their refunds.
The North Carolina-based company had filed for bankruptcy in the US in July last year and after quitting the Guyana market, it was stated that it was changing its focus to an Aircraft, Crew, Maintenance and Insurance operation.
Earlier this year, the company sought the approval of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) as it moved to reenter the Guyana market, supplying a number of documents which were requested for the Scheduled Service Certification Activation.
“This supplements the substantial fitness information Eastern Airlines LLC (formerly Dynamic International Airways) submitted March 9, 2018, and responds to the March 16, 2018 email from Mr Walker which specified the additional information needed to activate Eastern’s scheduled authority,” said the letter addressed to Lauralyn Remo, Chief, Air Carrier Fitness Division, Office of the Aviation Analysis of the DOT.
Among the documents supplied were a Forecast Income Statement for the proposed new scheduled service between JFK airport in New York and the Cheddi Jagan International Airport, as well as proof of the amount of funds required to meet the DOT’s three-month financial test. Current and forecasted balance sheets for March 31st 2018 and March 31st 2019 were also submitted.
It was noted that the company had already submitted a US$15 million commitment letter from owner of the company, Kenneth Woolley, which it believes “is substantially more than required to meet the three-month test.” A Warsaw Convention liability waiver, reflecting the name Eastern Airlines LLC was also submitted among other documents.
Woolley was an executive of Dynamic International Airways and it still lists himself as a member. According to the letter, Eastern Airlines “is not pursuing the California – China route listed in its amended application at this time.”
Attesting that the company did not falsify any documents it submitted, was former CEO of Dynamic Airways, Raymond Lawlor, who is now the President and CEO of Eastern Airlines LLC. Under US law, it is a crime to knowingly and willfully make any materially false, fictitious or fraudulent statement or representation in any matter within the jurisdiction of the executive, legislative or judicial branch of the United States.
On the 5th of October 2018, the US DOT confirmed the reissuance of the certificate of public convenience and necessity for interstate air transportation for the company, which is now registered in Virginia, according to company documents.
According to Dynamic, it would be using 10 aircraft where eight would be used for passenger flights and the remaining two for cargo.
In announcing Dynamic’s exit from Guyana last year, Lawlor had said, “We are aware of the tremendous inconvenience this will cause to our customers who have loyally supported us over the years, for that we do apologise. We ask for your understanding with this situation and want to assure all passengers who were scheduled to use our services after October 3, they will be issued a refund on the unused portion of their ticket. Dynamic intends to honour all its financial commitments to passengers, the Cheddi Jagan International Airport and the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority.”
In January this year, the Ministry of Public Infrastructure said that it would have begun the process of accessing the bond of US$200,000 which had been lodged by Dynamic in collaboration with its local handling agent, Roraima Airways Inc, when it had started operations here. The GCAA had pointed out that Roraima Airways Inc had submitted a list of 609 passengers, who are eligible for the refund, to the Ministry.
In April of this year, it announced that Dynamic had exited Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as of March 8 and was seeking to develop its business using the Eastern Airlines (2D, Greensboro) brand.