The Boeing bargaining unit of the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA) has set a date of February 4 for sending strike ballots to its members, union director Ray Goforth told AIN last Wednesday. Members of the Bargaining Unit Council (BUC), consisting of all the company’s “relevant” shop stewards, reached the decision on Tuesday night, during a meeting in which the council agreed to support the negotiating team’s rejection of the company’s “best and final offer.”
The new Rnav SIDs for Chicago O’ Hare (ORD) and Midway (MDW) airports scheduled for release last week were declared “technically unusable” until further notice after a potential problem was identified at the last minute.
In a filing in bankruptcy court just before Christmas, Hawker Beechcraft asked for court approval to shed two underfunded pension plans covering some 9,500 non-union workers and retirees. The request is part of an agreement with the federal government’s Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. (PBGC) and the OEM’s machinists’ union. Terms of the agreement require PBGC to assume responsibility for the two terminated pensions, while Hawker Beechcraft will keep the pension plan covering its 8,200 current and former union employees. A hearing to consider the plan is scheduled for January 17.
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.
Business aviation charity Sky Hope Network is collecting donations for the families of nine industry workers who were killed in a terrorist attack on September 18 in Afghanistan. Employed by South Africa-based ACS/Balmoral Central Contracts, the victims were three pilots, five mechanics and a customer service representative, who were targeted by a suicide car bomber as their minivan stopped at a gas station on its way to the airport in Kabul.
The FAA’s NextGen air traffic control modernization program will require a consensus among all aviation segments to succeed, NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen said yesterday at a House aviation subcommittee hearing on the progress of NextGen initiatives. Bolen was invited to appear before the subcommittee to represent RTCA, an organization charged with providing consensus-based recommendations to the FAA for NextGen. He is a former RTCA chair and currently serves as its vice chair.
Effective September 17, the FAA will implement new phraseology for aircraft departing via an Rnav SID at airports using simultaneous parallel-runway departures. Towers will now include the first SID waypoint in the takeoff clearance. For example, “Falcon 2GP, Rnav to (fix/waypoint), Runway 32 Left, cleared for takeoff.” The new procedure was designed to ensure crews have the correct procedure loaded in the aircraft’s FMS.
A bankruptcy court judge on Friday denied a request from Hawker Beechcraft to give eight of the Wichita OEM’s “senior leadership team” as much as $5.3 million in bonuses. HBC had filed the request with the U.S. bankruptcy court on August 15, describing the bonuses as based on the achievement of certain incentive goals.
The FAA is making “significant changes,” effective August 15, that will affect pilots flying instrument departures and arrivals. Pilots unfamiliar with the new “climb via” changes could be faced with separation losses, pilot deviations and potentially tense moments in the cockpit, according to NBAA. The new “climb via” instruction for standard instrument departures (SIDs) mirrors the similar “descend via” instruction already being issued for standard terminal arrival route (Star) procedures.
Jonathon Vondracek, a commercial pilot and CFI, pled guilty on June 12 in U.S. District Court, Tampa, Fla., to falsifying his FAA airman medical application.