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April 8, 2014 FacebookTwitterFlickrYouTubeRSS FeedsLinkedInBlog

In This Issue:

Breaking News:
ALPA Calls for End to U.S. Funding of Widebody Aircraft for
        Foreign Competitors

National News:
ALPA Calls for Industry-Wide Implementation of Existing
        Aircraft Location Technologies

ALPA Pilots Work to Prevent Preclearance Expansion
Pilot Group News:
Delta MEC Elects New Negotiating Committee
Coming to a Hub Near You—Mesa MEC Kicks Off "Hub Crawl"
SkyWest/ExpressJet Safety Survey Examines Unstable Approaches
Future Is in Question for North American Airlines
What's Next? Endeavor Air MEC Makes Plans at Meeting in Herndon
News on the Net


ALPA Calls for End to U.S. Funding of Widebody Aircraft for Foreign Competitors

Yesterday, ALPA called for the Export-Import Bank to stop providing below-market financing to foreign carriers’ widebody aircraft purchases. In a letter to members of the U.S. House Financial Services Committee, ALPA’s president, Capt. Lee Moak, urged that House members recognize and address the harm to U.S. airlines caused by the Bank’s financing of these aircraft, often to state-sponsored foreign airlines that have ample reserves and credit to obtain financing through other means.

Read the entire release here.
To learn more about ALPA’s call for a level playing field, click here.
Read about ALPA’s fight for a responsible Export-Import Bank here.

ALPA Calls for Industry-Wide Implementation of Existing Aircraft Location Technologies

On Friday, April 4, ALPA joined the International Federation of Air Line Pilots’ Associations in calling for industry-wide implementation of technology that would allow near real-time location of aircraft. The statement also stressed the importance of full cooperation between all stakeholders and complete transparency during an investigation of an incident in an effort to reduce unnecessary speculation.

Read the full statement in response to the events surrounding Malaysia Airlines Flight 370.

ALPA Pilots Work to Prevent Preclearance Expansion

As the House and Senate begin work on their respective FY15 Department of Homeland Security (DHS) appropriations bill, ALPA is calling on legislators to restrict DHS plans to expand Customs and Border Protection (CBP) preclearance sites to locations overseas that provide no benefit to U.S. airlines or passengers. In early 2014, over congressional and industry opposition, a CBP preclearance facility began operation at Abu Dhabi International Airport, a location where no U.S. air carrier flies and where only a state-owned foreign airline will benefit from the U.S. taxpayer-funded program. Now DHS is considering expanding its Middle Eastern preclearance operations to Dubai, Doha, and beyond. These facilities provide no benefit to U.S. carriers, despite being funded in part by U.S. tax dollars. Instead, DHS plans will benefit only state-owned Gulf carriers, which already receive billions of dollars in subsidies from their home countries.

ALPA has written Congress to explain why this is harmful to U.S. pilots, and ALPA staff and pilots have been hard at work on Capitol Hill urging members to restrict funding for new preclearance sites that do not make sense for U.S. passengers and U.S. airlines. ALPA members, friends, and members of the public are also encouraged to join this effort. Please write Congress here and tell them to oppose the expansion of preclearance facilities that do not benefit U.S. interests!

Delta MEC Elects New Negotiating Committee

At their March meeting in Los Angeles, the Delta MEC elected a new three-member Negotiating Committee, which will be negotiating the next pilot working agreement (PWA)—C2015. Negotiations under Section 6 of the Railway Labor Act begin in as little as one year.

Captain John Morgado was elected chairman of the Negotiating Committee, and First Officers Matt Coons and Heiko Kallenbach were elected as members. These line pilots have many years of experience serving Delta pilots—defending and negotiating improvements to the Delta PWA.

Read more about the Delta Negotiating Committee here.

Coming to a Hub Near You—Mesa MEC Kicks Off "Hub Crawl"

Today, the Mesa MEC started two weeks of visiting Mesa hubs across the country. Rather than waiting for pilots to come to them with issues and concerns, the MEC is going to the source and visiting pilots on their home turf. The officers will spend a day sitting in the crew room at each of the four hubs: Dulles, Charlotte Douglas, O’Hare, and Phoenix Sky Harbor. This is the second time the Mesa MEC has done a “hub crawl.” Last December, the MEC went to each hub and spent the day talking to pilots during turns or before they headed off to flight.

"If you’re always at the MEC office, it’s easy to let barriers build up between you and the pilots," said F/O Marcin Kolodziejczyk, Mesa MEC chairman. "These hub visits break down those barriers and let us speak directly to our fellow Mesa pilots, hear their concerns, and address their issues. We make a point to regularly fly the line and talk with all Mesa pilots. This is another opportunity for us to go them, rather than them coming to us."

Mesa pilots, to learn when the be in your hub, click here.

SkyWest/ExpressJet Safety Survey Examines Unstable Approaches

Pilots at ExpressJet and parent company SkyWest Airlines are being asked to participate in a special survey to examine human factors related to unstable approaches. Data from line operations safety audits and other safety programs show that, faced with the choice of abandoning an approach and going around or continuing the landing, a majority of pilots choose to continue to land.

The SKW/XJT survey is intended to better understand pilots’ motivations when they make the decision to land or go around. The confidential survey asks pilots to recall an unstable approach in their career and how they responded. The survey continues through April 14.

Future Is in Question for North American Airlines

The past week and a half has brought uncertainty, change, and furloughs to the North American (NAA) pilot group. NAA’s parent company, Global Aviation Holdings, defaulted on loan commitments in bankruptcy to its main financier, Cerberus Capital Management. Cerberus decided to cease operations of World Airways, NAA’s sister company, on March 27. The most critical development from this fluid situation for NAA was the March 31 furlough of the JFK-based pilots, leaving only the IAD-based pilots to service one customer for the airline.

No notice was given of the furloughs prior to the employee announcement. Management violated the pilots’ collective bargaining agreement by furloughing out of seniority and discontinuing insurance benefits, among other violations. The MEC has been working with ALPA advisors from the Representation and Legal departments, as well as outside bankruptcy counsel, to protect the contractual and legal rights of NAA pilots while the immediate focus is on the survival of the company and maintaining pilot jobs. The MEC remains hopeful that management will be able to secure funding or find a buyer to sustain the operation.

Global Aviation Holdings has been in Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization since November 2013. This is the second round of bankruptcy reorganization for Global in two years.

What’s Next? Endeavor Air MEC Makes Plans at Meeting in Herndon

The Endeavor Air MEC is conducting its MEC meeting in the ALPA offices in Herndon this week. The MEC agenda includes officer reports, committee updates, policy reviews, and briefings from Capt. Lee Moak and ALPA’s Economic and Financial Analysis and Representation departments. The MEC is also scheduled to participate in a strategic planning session Wednesday night.

Pictured: Marcia Eubanks, ALPA lead economic and financial analyst, provides an
economic briefing to the Endeavor Air MEC during its meeting today in Herndon.

News on the Net

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