SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — The airline responsible for all flights to the Sioux Gateway Airport announced its intention to end its operations, but that doesn’t mean you need to change your flight plans.
Sky West said a shortage of pilots is prompting the company to end services not just in Sioux City, but at all 29 airports it offers flights.
The airline flies connecting routes for United Airlines once a day to Chicago and Denver.
Sioux City’s Assistant City Manager said the federal government requires Sky West to continue operations in Sioux City until a replacement has been found.
“The good thing is we are under the essential air service program, and that kind of program gives us the umbrella to have that safety net, so right now it goes really to the department of transportation, they go through a process to take bids and review proposals. Communities get to provide input. Until a selection is made and a new airline is here, sky west will continue to provide service,” Mike Collett said.
The former Sioux City Gateway Board President said the process to find a new carrier has been accelerated and he shared how long that process has taken in the past.
“I think the order right now is for 30 days which is greatly accelerated, so they will accept bids over the next 30 days and then they’ll award a contract to someone else. You know, could take, in the past, our past experience in Sioux City has been, it’s taken anywhere from 4 to 6 months to see that happen,” shared Dave Bernstein.
The Department of Transportation will continue to take bids and proposals from carriers and community input will be used for the final decision.