Piper Aircraft and the state of Florida reached an agreement yesterday to amend a 2008 contract to retain the company’s operations in Florida and increase investment in aircraft manufacturing facilities. Since Piper is staying in Florida and has exceeded its research and development investment obligations under the previous agreement, Florida will permit Piper to retain half of approximately $6.6 million in economic development incentives already awarded to the company.
Ailing Scandinavian carrier SAS will reduce its workforce by 6,000 employees, sell off its Widerøe regional subsidiary and centralize administrative functions in Sweden in return for an increased credit line from major shareholders and banks of 3.5 billion Swedish kronor ($525 million) through March 2015. The new revolving credit facility has yet to be approved by the parliaments of Sweden and Norway.
A major hurdle facing Hawker Beechcraft in its effort to restructure and emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy is the sale of the Wichita OEM’s inventory of Hawker 4000s. The hearing date for the company’s request for court approval of the sale is now set for December 11, following a decision last week by judge Stuart Bernstein to deny the company’s request for an expedited hearing and sale.
Bombardier Learjet’s unionized employees in Wichita, members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW), are back on the job after a five-week strike. Over the weekend, the Learjet production line workers voted to accept a proposed contract agreement, ending a strike that began on October 8.
Bombardier Learjet and the union negotiating committee representing its striking production-line workers entered into federal mediation yesterday, the union said. The strike at the Wichita aircraft manufacturer is now in its fifth week, and the two sides haven’t talked since the union rejected the proposed contract and voted to strike on October 6. The biggest roadblock was cost increases in medical insurance for workers.
Bombardier has appointed Flying Colours of Peterborough, Ontario, and its subsidiary JetCorp Technical Services of St. Louis as authorized service facilities (ASF) for its Learjet and Challenger business jets. Flying Colours is known for its new green Challenger 850 completions as a Bombardier- authorized completion center.
Duncan Aviation has named Richard Gardner as regional manager in Australia and New Zealand and Andy Fernandes as regional manager for India. Gardner has been supporting Duncan Aviation since 2007 working as an international representative in New Zealand. Prior work experience includes employment with Air New Zealand and Pacific Turbine. Fernandes has been with Duncan Aviation since 1999 and will continue his current responsibilities as avionics installations sales rep serving a dual role as he supports operators in India.
The FAA has proposed a $205,250 civil penalty against Circor Aerospace, Inc., a Sylmar, Calif.-based aircraft repair station, for allegedly violating drug and alcohol testing regulations. The agency alleges that between September 2010 and December 2011, Circor failed to conduct required pre-employment drug tests and did not wait until test results were verified as negative before hiring 29 people to perform safety-sensitive aircraft maintenance work.
Anticipating several more years of suppressed demand for private aviation, NetJets Europe is seeking further voluntary redundancies from its pilot workforce. The fractional ownership and jet card provider is in consultation with its flight crews in the hope of avoiding compulsory layoffs, with some of the temporary payroll reduction measures it took in 2009 set to expire by the end of next year.
Jet Professionals, a flight-department staffing specialist, is on hand at NBAA announcing a new human resources offering it believes could revolutionize business for smaller aviation companies. The Jet Aviation subsidiary (Booth No. 3594) has unveiled its Jet-Pro PEO, which it describes as the only professional employer organization exclusive to business aviation. The Jet-Pro PEO provides personnel administration and payroll services in addition to tax compliance and filing duties for small and midsize companies.