Bell Helicopter Textron last month announced plans to lay off 270 workers at its Fort Worth-area plants. The job cuts will affect both union-represented hourly workers and salaried employees. A spokesman for the rotorcraft builder said further cutbacks were possible as the company reevaluated its position in the slumping world helicopter market and as the effects of investigations and slowdowns in the U.S.
The unions representing nearly 20,000 employees of the FAA have joined in a coalition “to hold the FAA accountable” for meeting its modernization goals and to improve working conditions at the agency. The coalition represents the largest group of organized employees at the FAA.
Morrisville, N.C.-based Midway Airlines’ plans to emerge from oblivion as a US Airways Express carrier appear to be derailed once again until at least January, while management scrambles to secure the financing needed for its proposed fleet of Bombardier CRJs. The bankrupt airline, grounded since mid-July, hoped to resume operations in October to provide feed for US Airways. The two airlines have now set a new target date of January 15.
French regional airlines AOM and Air Liberté have escaped the jaws of bankruptcy through their purchase by an Air France pilot. The airlines–formerly owned by SAirGroup and French investment firm Taitbout Antibes–expect to shed 1,800 jobs, restructure and adopt a new name as part of a plan to form a viable rival to Air France.
In a cooperative agreement announced last month, ChevronTexaco Global Aviation (CTGA) employees will sponsor 22 children from around the world. After extensive research, the employees chose Childreach/ Plan, a nonprofit organization that promotes children’s well being, rights and interests around the world.
After months of heated debate over future regional jet jobs at US Airways, the pilots of wholly owned subsidiaries Piedmont and Allegheny Airlines ratified new concessionary labor agreements with their bankrupt employers, bringing the Arlington, Va.-based airline a step closer to meeting the conditions of a $900 million federal loan guarantee.
The DOT is proposing to eliminate many of the drug-related questions required to be answered by employers on the annual management information system (MIS) forms. If the proposal is adopted, 14 question areas will be dropped from the MIS form. Elimination of the data will reduce the MIS form to a single page and standardize the information collected across DOT agencies, including the FAA.
Integrating pilot seniority, one of the thorniest issues created when fractional-operator Flight Options acquired Raytheon Travel Air earlier this year, has apparently been resolved. In a mandatory vote this past summer, pilots adopted a seniority program called modified date-of-hire.
One OEM called it “an adjustment.” Another referred to it as a “reduction in force.” Yet another described an “involuntary separation plan.” But by those or any other names, the meaning is the same– “layoffs.” In the past 18 months, business aircraft manufacturers have announced layoffs of more than 9,000 workers and, barring a reversal of the current economic trend, there will be more.
Six pilots–all previously employed by the former fractional operator Raytheon Travel Air of Wichita before its March 21 merger with Flight Options of Cleveland–have filed two separate lawsuits alleging wrongful discharge from their jobs.