Regional airline departures irk NW towns

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NEWPORT, Ore. (AP) -- A Portland-based airline that gets subsidies and incentives to provide regional flights has made some communities unhappy by ending service.

The Oregonian reports (http://bit.ly/wjBYyi) that SeaPort Airlines in the last year stopped service to Newport, Astoria and Salem in Oregon and dropped an Idaho Falls-Boise route.

Newport Mayor Mark McConnell says towns should be leery of providing help to get SeaPort to add flights.

A SeaPort vice president, Tim Sieber, says the service has to be profitable, and the airline is changing its strategy. It has also eliminated its 3-year-old Portland-Seattle flights as of Jan. 27.

Its expansion plans include North Bend in Oregon and Yakima and Wenatchee in Washington state.

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Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com