Aloha 1113c hearing complete

islandhopper

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Clock Ticking For Aloha Airlines
Norman Lee – nlee@kgmb9.com



Thirteen days. That's how much time Aloha Airlines and its pilot union has until D-Day. Today, both parties arrived for a fifth and final day of hearings in federal bankruptcy court.

Judge Robert Faris is considering a motion to throw out the collective bargaining agreement between the airline and the Air Line Pilots Association.

The carrier has been seeking concessions from its five labor unions in order to move forward with its reorganization plan and emerge from Chapter Eleven bankruptcy protection. Without those labor concessions, the airline says it would likely lose its new investor, Yucaipa, and would face liquidation.

During a break in the proceedings, Michael Feeney, who sits on the negotiating committee for the Air Line Pilots Association, was asked whether he believed that claim.

"No, I don't," he replied. When asked why, Feeney paused for several seconds and said, "I'm in confidentiality right here, I can't talk about that."

Charles Dyke, who is representing Aloha Airlines during its latest court proceedings, told the judge the carrier has no new investor lined up. He also said no investor would be willing to absorb the current pension plan.

"Unless a new investor comes forward, it's over," he said.

Dyke told the court other union groups the airlines has negotiated with understand the need to sacrifice in order for the company to survive. He said the pilots are playing with disaster.

"They want to pull the trigger and see if there's a bullet in there," Dyke said.

The pilots say they have already agreed to pay cuts in 2003 and are willing to pay a premium for medical insurance. However, they are balking at the amount of cuts in pension benefits for retirees. They also want pilots who reach the mandatory retirement age of 60 to be covered by the company's medical plan until they become eligible for Medicare. They say Aloha's proposal would cut off those retirees from the company plan.

Daniel Katz, who is representing ALPA during the proceedings, told the court the pilots have also offered to freeze its pension plan. He argued Aloha has dismissed all of the union's proposals and is not bargaining in good faith. He also noted the airline's agreements with the other unions are contingent upon the company reaching a deal with ALPA.

"So really in some ways, we're negotiating on behalf of the entire employee group, not just the 300-plus Aloha pilots," said Feeney.

Feeney says if this is designed to be a pressure tactic on the pilots union, it won't work.

Katz also revealed should the judge throw out the pilots labor agreement, the union would consider taking a strike vote.

"I can't comment on that," said Feeney. Faced with those gloomy scenarios, Judge Faris has repeatedly pleaded with both parties to reach a consensual agreement and not leave the decision in his hands.

"This is literally a no-win proposition. I don't think anybody is really the winner if I decide it," Faris said.

"Not only do I not think it's a win-win, but I think either way the judge goes, it's a lose-lose proposition," said Feeney.

However, both sides confess, they are far apart on the key issues.

By law, the judge must issue a decision by November 28. That gives both parties less than two weeks to settle their differences and agree on a compromise.

"We have been negotiating through the weekend with the company and I believe I'll be heading straight from this hearing to continue negotiations," said Feeney.

One weary-looking attorney walked into the elevator following the hearing and murmured to no one in particular, "It's a waiting game now."

The clock is ticking.



 
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HA pilot

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I admire you guys, we work for retirement. Good luck from your neighbors next door. I hope Delta is watching.
 

RJP

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Like my bros at Delta are saying, they're ready to burn the place down instead of caving to mgmt any further. Islandhopper, as you've said, the revolution starts here.

Best of luck.
 

mdanno808

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Good luck. Hope it works out for you guys/gals.
 

Der Kommissar

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This has got to be a really frustrating time. On one hand, the pilots and others just don't want to give anything else back. They've already given a substantial chunk of their pay and other stuff... but at the same time, what happens if the investors pull out because of a lack of contract negotiation. Ugh. I hope it works out.
 

ultrarunner

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Der Kommissar said:
what happens if the investors pull out because of a lack of contract negotiation

Then management actually has to be accountable competent.

It 'AINT about the pilot's compenstation!


...phone's ringing..I think it's someone calling to tell me the last time pilot concessions saved an airline from liquidation....

stby....


gee, no one there.....imagine that.
 

whymeworry?

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First, GOOD JOB AQ PILOTS for showing unity and resolve through the court hearings. Keep the pressure on.

Next, while I applaud their tenacity (unlike the whimps at NW, of which 1,000 pilots couldn't be bothered to vote on a 24% pay cut... PATHETIC!), according to an AP story today, there were only "several pilots" in the courtroom. I certainly hope that's only because it was SRO and the remainder of the pilots couldn't get in. Point being, they need to show up in force and keep pressure on that joke of a judge.
 

islandhopper

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HA pilot said:
I admire you guys, we work for retirement. Good luck from your neighbors next door. I hope Delta is watching.
Thanks! I am sure Delta thinks they are smarter than us country folk.
 

islandhopper

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whymeworry? said:
First, GOOD JOB AQ PILOTS for showing unity and resolve through the court hearings. Keep the pressure on.

Next, while I applaud their tenacity (unlike the whimps at NW, of which 1,000 pilots couldn't be bothered to vote on a 24% pay cut... PATHETIC!), according to an AP story today, there were only "several pilots" in the courtroom. I certainly hope that's only because it was SRO and the remainder of the pilots couldn't get in. Point being, they need to show up in force and keep pressure on that joke of a judge.
We have had fantastic showings in court and informational picketing. We estimated nearly 100% of all off-line pilots showed up for the informational picketing, and I have seen just about every AQ pilot I know at the court at least once. Some pilots were there for every single day. That included downtown Honolulu parking fees and submitting to the pau hana rush hour jam. I have never been prouder to be part of anything, ever, period.
 

ultrarunner

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whymeworry? said:
Point being, they need to show up in force and keep pressure on that joke of a judge.

She cancels that CBA, she's got problems she can't even imagine yet. She really would be at risk of serious harm, IMO.

I'm thinking she's smarter than that.
 

whymeworry?

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Der Kommissar said:
This has got to be a really frustrating time. On one hand, the pilots and others just don't want to give anything else back. They've already given a substantial chunk of their pay and other stuff... but at the same time, what happens if the investors pull out because of a lack of contract negotiation. Ugh. I hope it works out.
It's really simple, more investors will come. Look, pilot costs are only 1-3% of the DOC for any airline. The problem is, management and the creditors (read: lawyers and consultant) think ALPA is a lame duck and will fold like a wet noodle (ummm, like the NW pilots did) so they feel if they can get the pilots to fork over their pay and benefits, all other parties will be saitisfied and they can move forward.

If the investors walk, AQ WILL NOT shut down. It simply won't happen. The comany will continue to operate in CH11 while they wait for another investor or for the financial climate to change. Look at UAL, they have been in bancruptcy for over 3 years. It's kiind of pathetic really, if there were a limit to the time spent in C11, more airlines would fail, and overcapacity would be addressed.
 

800Dog

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islandhopper said:
Thanks! I am sure Delta thinks they are smarter than us country folk.
Absolutely not. Just hope Delta Pilots are as unified. Best of luck to you all.
 

islandhopper

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800Dog said:
Absolutely not. Just hope Delta Pilots are as unified. Best of luck to you all.
me too. We are watching Delta and other situations very close. This information deserves a new thread, probably already been posted but here it is...

http://www.alpa.org/DesktopModules/ALPA_Documents/ALPA_DocumentsView.aspx?itemid=2113&ModuleId=1458&Tabid=73

Release #05.052
November 16, 2005

Senate Pension Reform Legislation: One Step Closer to Victory for Airline Pilots
WASHINGTON, D.C. --- Capt. Duane E. Woerth, president of the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), issued the following statement today after the U.S. Senate brought the “Pension Security and Transparency Act of 2005” (S.1783) to the floor by unanimous consent and approved the measure by a 97-2 vote. Before the final passage, the Senate adopted, by an overwhelming voice vote, an amendment offered by Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), and Senator Trent Lott (R-MS) that provides a 20-year amortization period for unfunded pension plan liabilities. In addition, the Senate adopted by a 58-41 vote an amendment offered by Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI) and Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) that would apply the PBGC’s normal retirement age guarantee limit to pilots at their mandatory retirement age of 60.
“The Air Line Pilots Association hails the Senate’s passage of the ‘Pension Security and Transparency Act of 2005’ as a major milestone for airline pilots. This legislation will make it possible for several airlines to live up to their promise of a secure retirement pension to tens of thousands of airline employees, and will restore much of what thousands of other pilots have lost in terminated pensions. “We applaud Senators Isakson, Rockefeller, Lott, Akaka, and Specter for their tremendous leadership on behalf of airline employees across the nation. Congress recognized the uniqueness of the airline industry in the Isakson-Rockefeller-Lott amendment and the uniqueness of airline pilots in the Akaka-Specter amendment.
“By extending the amortization period to 20 years, the Senate has helped to prevent existing defined-benefit plans from being terminated and will help ensure a secure retirement for airline employees.
“We urge the U.S. House to follow the Senate’s lead and act swiftly on HR 2830 to facilitate a conference between the House and Senate before the Congress adjourns at the end of the year. Thousands of faithful employees’ futures are hanging in the balance.”
ALPA represents 63,000 airline pilots at 40 airlines in the U.S. and Canada. Its website is at www.alpa.org.
 

dash8driver

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islandhopper said:
We have had fantastic showings in court and informational picketing. We estimated nearly 100% of all off-line pilots showed up for the informational picketing, and I have seen just about every AQ pilot I know at the court at least once. Some pilots were there for every single day. That included downtown Honolulu parking fees and submitting to the pau hana rush hour jam. I have never been prouder to be part of anything, ever, period.
dont forget about the lunch time trash talkin and beer drinkin... :)

court was pretty informative.. it was good to see so many people you havent seen in a while. you're right about those parking fees.. those killed me, but well worth it.




.
 

islandhopper

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dash8driver said:
dont forget about the lunch time trash talkin and beer drinkin... :)

.
Now that you mention it... We talked trash about everybody. Did we leave ANYBODY out? We even roasted a few members of flightinfo. I know Hugh got trashed very early on.

Heres the two stories from our illustrious island newspapers...

Judge implores Aloha Air and pilots to reach a deal

http://starbulletin.com/2005/11/16/business/story01.html

[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif][SIZE=+2]Aloha union: Another 'sacrifice'
http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20051116/BUSINESS03/511160315/1071
[/SIZE][/FONT]
 
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RJP

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islandhopper said:
Thanks! I am sure Delta thinks they are smarter than us country folk.
Country folk? From where, up-country Maui? You do realize that Delta's in Georgia, right?
 

Der Kommissar

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Hugh Jorgan said:
I'll take country over town anyday...
I think you meant to say, "I'll take (another) country over town anyday."

:)
 

vc10

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whymeworry? said:
It's really simple, more investors will come. Look, pilot costs are only 1-3% of the DOC for any airline.
Where'd you get that figure from? It's wholly inaccurate.

Look at labor costs for a typical airline. 30-40 or more %. Pilots are at least a third of that, perhaps more depending on the airline. 10-15% of TOTAL costs is a more accurate figure.
 
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