"We're letting you go" is not something most people want to hear, let alone right before Christmas. Cedar Rapids had its turn earlier this fall when Raytheon Technologies, the parent company of Collins Aerospace, cut about 72 positions, according to the Iowa City Press-Citizen. But Decorah and Bellevue are now getting hit, as several employees have been given their walking papers in a new round of layoffs.

The cuts will take effect on January 2 (just after the holidays--as if that's going to soften the blow) and will involve 29 positions in Decorah and 36 in Bellevue. The positions being cut are in the production of commercial airline parts--an area taking a hit in its own right as airlines continue to cancel orders due to fewer travelers. The current volume of airline passengers is less than half of what it was in 2019, and many of Collins Aerospace's primary customers including Boeing and Airbus are reporting losses in the billions over the last nine months.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reported that 837,000 people had flown this past Sunday, December 6 down from 2.3 million on the same single day last year. In a data report from April 14, only 88,000 passengers flew so the numbers for the industry are improving, just not enough to maintain the jobs of these 65 employees.

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