Obama wins a battle in the war on corporate jets

Cessna has announced that it is suspending development of a midsize corporate jet, the Citation Columbus, closing the factory in Bend, OR where the plane was being created. The company will return $50 million in deposits already received from willing customers. Cessna's Citation jets generally are among the smaller models on offer, but the company was hoping to expand into a more lucrative segment of the market, until flying a corporate jet became politically unfashionable. The company hopes to resume development at some point in the future.*

Additionally, the company is sending layoff notices to 1,600 employees "at every level" including 700 salaried employees.

John Croft of Flight Global notes:

Work on the new CJ4 light jet and the light sport SkyCatcher will continue in Kansas, says Pelton, but Cessna will shutter the Corvalis single-engine piston aircraft facility in Bend, Oregon, formerly the home of Columbia Aircraft, and move the line to Cessna's Independence, Kansas, location.

Demand for the company's Mustang very-light jet remains promising, marked by the expected delivery Monday of the 200th aircraft to a new owner in Hawaii.

Our sympathy goes out to the workers who are discovering what "change you can believe in" means for them.

*Thanks to Doug Oliver, Director of Corporate Communications of Cessna for pointing this out.