The Federal Register this week published corrections to the final rule on flight-crew rest and duty times. Clarifications include that flight-crew members may not accept a trip that forces them to exceed 100 flight hours in any 672-consecutive-hour period, nor more than 1,000 hours in a given 365-day period.
In a decision that could have wide-ranging implications, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that helicopter pilots for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey are not “professional employees” under the Fair Labor Standards Act and are therefore entitled to mandatory overtime pay. The ruling re-affirmed a lower court’s decision that the pilots are “highly trained technicians” and not professional employees.
Pilatus Aircraft is shortening working hours for 350 of its employees from September 1 in response to order cancellations for its PC-12 NG single-engine turboprop. According to the Swiss manufacturer, the move will reduce the overall number of annual paid hours by about 15 percent and the company does not plan to lay off staff.
Late in May, Eurocopter signed a new agreement with four of five unions represented at the company in France. The main goal of the work time agreement is to adapt to higher production rates, while simultaneously making provisions for possible ramp-downs. Due to different arrangements in the previous agreement, there are only four-and-a-half hours per day when all production employees are working on the line.
Are the new Department of Labor (DOL) “Fair Pay Rules,” which became effective August 23 and changed the overtime pay rules for workers earning less than $23,660 per year, or $455 per week, in danger of extinction? By a vote of 223 to 193 last month, the House tacked an amendment on to the $142.5 billion measure funding education, worker training and health programs that would block the DOL rules.
Metalworkers at Embraer’s assembly plant in São Jose dos Campos, Brazil, ended their threats of a strike last month when they agreed to accept a 17.35-percent wage hike retroactive to November 1. In late November roughly 4,000 morning-shift workers voted to enter strike mode after rejecting an offer of a 16.15-percent increase. At the time the workers demanded a 20-percent raise and a reduction in working hours from 43 to 40 hours per week.