Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Batesville, Indiana: Hill-Rom, Hillenbrand Closing Private Airport

(Batesville, Ind.) - A local airport is being shut down, grounding three private jets and more than a dozen jobs.

Hill-Rom Holdings and Hillenbrand, Inc. operate a private air strip in Batesville, located northwest of town off Enochsburg Road.

The decision was made by company executives Monday to close the airport, Hill-Rom Senior Vice Presidents of Corporate Support Services John Dickey told the Batesville Herald-Tribune.

The closure means that 18 people who work on three private company jets at the airport are being laid off. The newspaper reported that some of those employees, who were notified of the decision Monday, may be hired for other positions with Hill-Rom or Hillenbrand.

Company executives say regulations prevent them from using a private aviation program for customer visits, and it is no longer cost-effective.

“Hill-Rom has decided we will not be using charter services or any special private aircraft services ... only commercial aviation” for future travel needs, Dickey told the Herald-Tribune.

The companies plan to sell the jets. Once that is accomplished, it will look to unload the airport property.

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