Regulations to combat pilot fatigue–which FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt said will migrate to Part 135 operations–have been delayed past the August 1 deadline set by Congress. People familiar with the issues say release of the new rules for Part 121 scheduled airlines now could be weeks or months away.
Canadian Labour Congress
The pilots of Trans States Airlines “overwhelmingly” voted to accept a new contract brokered by the Air Line Pilots Association, the union announced in late July. The deal guarantees an 11.7-percent average increase in captain’s pay and a 14.5-percent average increase in first officer’s pay, which, according to ALPA, brings TSA pilots closer to industry standard.
Hawker Beechcraft and the International Association of Machinists (IAM) union began negotiations on a new contract early last month. The current contract for the 2,800 aircraft line workers expires August 7. Hawker Beechcraft and the IAM opened negotiations early last October to try to reach an agreement. However, the proposal was overwhelmingly voted down and talks were closed until last month.
Local 794 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM&AW) in Albuquerque, N.M., is working with state and local leaders to put together an economic incentive package to avoid closure of the GE Aviation facility in the third quarter of next year.
Workers at Bombardier’s de Havilland plant in north Toronto ratified a new three-year labor contract yesterday, averting a strike that stood to affect 2,750 workers and halt production of the Q400 turboprop. Eighty-four percent of the workers, who are represented by two local Canadian Auto Workers chapters, voted to accept the new agreement, reached on June 23, after some two months of negotiation and hours after a 10 a.m. strike deadline.
Talks between Boeing and its striking machinists could resume this weekend under the terms of an agreement to return to the bargaining table more than a month after 27,000 members of the International Association of Machinists walked off the job September 6.
The pilot leadership of United Express affiliate Air Wisconsin last month rejected a proffer of arbitration by the National Mediation Board, triggering the mandatory 30-day countdown to a potential strike at 12:01 a.m. on August 12. In June 96.6 percent of Air Wisconsin’s pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, authorized union leadership to call a strike if necessary.
A pair of long-awaited pilot contracts finally reached the ratification stage when Appleton, Wis.-based United Express affiliate Air Wisconsin and Alaska Airlines subsidiary Horizon Air each closed collective-bargaining negotiations with their respective pilot unions.
A marginally sufficient 55 percent of the 540-strong force of eligible employees at aeromed operator Air Methods recently voted to approve representation by the Office and Professional Employees International Union (OPEIU). Under the Railway Labor Act, a simple majority is all that’s required for a union to win such a decision.
What started as an annoyance three years ago appears to have turned into a legitimate threat to the essence of the Air Line Pilots Association’s long-held strategy for protecting mainline pilot interests.