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Grounded again by outside forces

Talk about bad timing for the Tri-Lakes region. Just as the summer shot in the arm of vacationers was arriving around the Fourth of July to help bolster local business and the tourism industry, our local airport lost a significant partner.

This week Corey Hurwitch, Adirondack Regional Airport manager, said the Hertz rental car company no longer has vehicles available at the location and is cutting back on its franchises. “I don’t think Hertz is ever coming back,” he said.

The problem, Hurwitch said, is twofold.

First, the company — like so many others — faced a crisis during the pandemic. With limited or next to no travel due to COVID-19, it filed for bankruptcy and sold about 200,000 of its 650,000 vehicles.

Another issue — on a more national level — is a car shortage. Its facing consumers as well as many dealerships.

Hurwitch told reporter Aaron Cerbone that the airport, which is owned by the town of Harrietstown, has been working with Avis in Plattsburgh and Vermont Rental Cars to temporarily get vehicles. However, that is not a convenient situation.

In the meantime, the local impact is not only on the travelers. It also affects those here at home needing a temporary vehicle.

“There would be local people that would come in and rent cars when their car was being worked on,” Hurwitch said. “But without Hertz there, the locals aren’t going to pay the drop-off and pick-up fees.”

Consider this one more — hopefully temporary — inconvenience from the virus.

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