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Big Sky Airlines quits the North Country

Big Sky Airlines is pulling out of the North Country. The company announced on Wednesday that its planes will cease operations in the region at midnight on January 7. In a statement, Big Sky officials said they would continue to operate in Montana at least for the time being. "Our eastern operations were dramatically affected by a combination of unusually bad weather, disappointing revenue and record high fuel prices," said Fred deLeeuw, Big Sky's president, in a prepared statement. "We have great people who have worked extraordinarily hard, but that factor could not overcome the challenges we faced, and we no longer believe that we can reach sustained profitability." Big Sky will abandon a Federal subsidy, which could result in legal entanglements, and leave half a dozen North Country airports without service. Communities affected include Watertown, Ogdensburg, Massena, Plattsburgh, and Lake Clear. Jonathan Brown will have more on this story Thursday morning during the 8 o'clock hour.

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Reported by

Brian Mann
Adirondack Bureau Chief

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