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Good perspective from former APA President

Old 01-28-2015, 09:29 AM
  #71  
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I think I'm beginning to see the No voters strategy: Vote down the contract to send a message management (which may or may not yield anything) and let the BOD vote Yes before arbitration begins. Sort of like Hot Potato with a 3 coil steamer.
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Old 01-28-2015, 09:36 AM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by nerd
then you have to vote no. Do you want to work at a miserable place with ch11 work rules and total pay for the long haul? **** on dougweiser and kirby. They won't be around for next time. Your time is now. This is not 2001-2010. Consolidation has changed the industry, maybe not forever but for the next 5-8 years. It's our time. Take a small short time hit for the longterm. You're worth it. The last 10 years have had most of us in a stockholm state of mind. Not needed anymore. Good luck, we(your peers industry wide are counting on you)
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Old 01-28-2015, 09:46 AM
  #73  
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So voting No results in an arbitrated settlement. What guarantee is there that an arbitrator will not impose every term on the JCBA, basically replacing the vote of the pilot with a YES vote of his own?
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Old 01-28-2015, 10:08 AM
  #74  
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Originally Posted by Bringupthebird
So voting No results in an arbitrated settlement. What guarantee is there that an arbitrator will not impose every term on the JCBA, basically replacing the vote of the pilot with a YES vote of his own?

You're right - no guarantee whatsoever. That said, your scenario is possible, but not probable. What voting NO does do is allow us the CHANCE and the OPPORTUNITY to improve the contract and do it sooner. If we vote YES, not only are we screwed for the next 5-10 years, it will only be that much harder to gain back any of the work rules and QOL issues for which we lost and look forward to gaining in the future.

But yes - you are right, there is no guarantee......just as in life.

For you, your family, and our unity - Vote NO!
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Old 01-28-2015, 12:21 PM
  #75  
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Yeah but as a LUSwest pilot my QOL was flushed down the drain with the MOU. The best work rules and benefits of all the majors was tossed aside never to return, so you're asking folks to gamble that they can hold onto the QOL contained in a BK era contract?

You gotta be more convincing than that. Plus the loudest of the loudmouths are in CLT and PHL and they have never accomplished anything of value for their pilots, so why listen to them?

You have two choices: Green Book with money or Green Book without. Ant other analysis is pure Don Quixote and you know how things turned out for him.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:04 PM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by Bringupthebird
Yeah but as a LUSwest pilot my QOL was flushed down the drain with the MOU. The best work rules and benefits of all the majors was tossed aside never to return, so you're asking folks to gamble that they can hold onto the QOL contained in a BK era contract?

You gotta be more convincing than that. Plus the loudest of the loudmouths are in CLT and PHL and they have never accomplished anything of value for their pilots, so why listen to them?

You have two choices: Green Book with money or Green Book without. Ant other analysis is pure Don Quixote and you know how things turned out for him.
And here it is, folks. The very reason why you are going to get the APA down the tubes here. The MOU that the West overwhelming voted for (blame here) are now crying why they are voting YES!! Just to "stick it" to the MAN....the "bad ole" East pilots. The guys who "stuck it" to the West pilots.

Every pilot "sticking it" to every pilot. Learned it from the APA, you know....the "Hitler youth".
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:17 PM
  #77  
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FACTS
Or
SUPPOSITION

"Negotiations are over "Were trying to build trust" .... "You build trust by doing what you say you will do" (past statements, some recent, some not- from various senior management types).

We want to remind you of the recent statements, above - by management, as they engage in the disreputable practice of communicating directly to the pilot group, thereby subverting your elected bargaining representative. For those of you up on your history, the "Tokyo Rose" strategy of WWII comes to mind.

Let's examine Mr. Parker's use of the word trust. LUS pilots will recall the following statements made by him, at the infamous "Crew News" sessions. "Trust me, I would love to compensate you like FedEx, UPS, you're the most experienced pilot group in the world, but I can't" "Trust me, I will welcome the day when I don't have to stand up here and tell you why I can't compensate you like your peers"

During the time Messer's Parker & Kirby were wooing the LAA pilots for help in ousting the previous management, they heard the following from Mr. Parker: "Trust me, when we make Delta profits, you'll make Delta money" "Trust me, we will find a way to compensate you" "Trust me, it may not be in contract form, but we will find a way"

Some of you have inquired about the recent statements by management. The word "trust" is now used as an implied threat instead of a promissory tone. A few are concerned by management's apparent line-in-the-sand-mentality. To that we would only say this:, the best barometer of an individual's future behavior, is to look at their past. Has this management ever done what it promised to do, without being forced?

Relationships built upon "trust" (whether personal or business) do not involve threats of harm, or punitive consequences, in the event of disagreement. The ingredients of a "trusting" relationship involve fairness, compromise, security and integrity, or in other words, just doing the right thing.



Excise or Cadillac Tax

There is a plethora of opinions and alleged facts floating around regarding the implications of this upcoming tax. Simply put, IF this tax is not amended or deleted, it results in a substantial penalty being imposed on businesses in this country. Did you catch the operative word here?.....Businesses. The Cadillac Tax IS the responsibility of the COMPANY. They are trying to absolve themselves of this obligation by writing language (15-02) that shifts this responsibility to YOU the employee. A vote of yes has the potential of shifting the raise you will be getting into health cares expenses.

Arguments for and against vary like the weather. The bottom line is 15-02 allows the current Schedule K protective contract language to be shredded. Will the company do it? Who knows what this management will do, we won't even go there. The point is, it's WHAT they CAN do. Remember, many law firms are suggesting that companies consider not covering spouses so as to not trigger the tax. On the recent CLT crew news, VP Elise Eberwein stated that (2) of the current plans would trigger the tax today, her words, not ours.

By not granting them the option (they don't get it in arbitration) it forces them to withdraw it from every other labor contract on the property, any idea on the future bargaining value of that? We would welcome an opportunity to work collaboratively with the company on a mutually beneficial solution, collaboratively is the key word here.

Some have asked "why did the BOD offer to accept the proposal without a membership vote, if the excise tax was a concern"? The honest answer to that is, we screwed up.

The BOD relies on the various committee's and experts to raise the red flag and alert us to problematic language. Not to place blame, but this was NOT done. When the BOD decided to refuse the rush, rush deadline threats from management, and we finally received ALL of the completed contract language, (January 2, 2015) we were able to sit down and collectively examine the implications of the 15-02 letter.
Understand, the last (3) months has been like a fire department dealing with simultaneous multiple alarm fires. As your aviation training and experience has hopefully taught you, never allow yourself to be rushed into hasty decisions.



ARBITRATION

The results of LUS past arbitration history remains a concern for many of our pilots. Let's be clear. In the event of a NO vote, this is an entirely DIFFERENT arbitration process that we would be involved in. The role of the arbitrator's (3) is extremely limited. Please read the Arbitration Explanation letter by APA legal on the APA home page. (Excerpts below)

"Under the rules of the JCBA arbitration, the arbitrators cannot approve any proposal that is not "consistent with the terms of the MTA." The arbitrators must "adhere to the economic terms of the MTA" and cannot consider any change to Scope. APA reads this language to mean that no provision of the Green Book can be changed, and the arbitrators will almost certainly agree. As a result, management proposals such as the elimination of home-base-time (HBT) cannot be considered because they would change a provision in the Green Book. Similarly, changes to pay scales cannot be considered. Keep in mind these restrictions do not apply to a negotiated settlement, only one that is arbitrated".

"There are a variety of possible arbitration outcomes dependent on the parties' voluntary actions, but absent a jointly constructed agreement, the limits of the arbitration are defined in the MOU and provide for the Green Book as the default result".

During the recent CLT crew news, Mr. Parker himself acknowledged that Green Book was the anticipated result of arbitration.

The ONLY ask that APA would have in arbitration is implementation. There are currently (30) plus unimplemented items in reference to the Green Book. Requesting the arbitrator's to order a prompt implementation schedule is in order. This management has had (2) years to plan on using and implementing Green Book, the IT excuse is worn out. LUS operated for years on paper claim forms, enough said.

In a NO vote scenario, the arbitration path has to be viewed in the same context as a divorce. The parties agree to disagree. Usually someone is giving up X% of their stuff. If reconciliation occurs during the process, so be it.

If your vote is NO, you can either take solace or concern with the following. The company may or may not decide to negotiate. Speaking for your CLT reps (and we believe the majority of the BOD) we will NOT accept the current proposal after arbitration. We will NOT vote to send the same proposal out to the pilot group. Mr. Parker, the arbitrary actions of the APFA leadership will NOT be repeated. Absent improvements AND retro, we look forward to (MidContractAdj) 2016 and early Section 6 openers (per the MTA) in 2017.



DELTA NEGOTIATIONS

One could speculate forever on the what-ifs. Delta management has recently issued a public letter stating their intent is to conclude a contract early in 2015. Remember, the last contract was inked (7) months early.

Delta pilots need a 9% raise to equal the proposed Kirby rates. Does anyone really believe that the starting point of Delta's offer would not equal or exceed these? Remember in 2001, the LUS hourly rate on the A-321 (with 7%) override was over $230 per hour, (14) years ago!

Speculation abounds that the Delta pilots may trade a percentage of PS for hourly rates. The time/money/value formula comes into play here. Delta pilots are enjoying 16.5% of W2 earnings for 2014 with an expected 20% of W2 for 2015. Remember, the only airline besides AAL that does not pay their pilots PS is Spirit. Do the math to see how underpaid you would be in comparison to a Delta pilot at the end of the contract. As a side note, your PS using the Delta contract formula combined with AAL profits would be 23-24% of your W2 earnings.

The pilots of Delta need to obtain an 18.5% increase (Group 2) to have our 2016 pay rates (MCA) EQUAL those of the new Kirby proposal. If one assumes that 9% is a given, another 9.5% would need to be derived from selling PS.

If they were selling, would you assume 9-10-12%? Is it feasible that Mr. Anderson would front load the first year by borrowing from the 2nd and 3rd year of the contract. Given Mr. Andersons publicly stated disdain of AAL management and his desire to limit cost disparity, don't be surprised. One only needs to look at his actions during the APFA vote.

Regardless of what Delta does with PS, an American pilot will lag substantialy behind their Delta counterpart in respect to total compensation and QOL benefits.

Remember this, Delta pilots will most likely be in their SECOND or THIRD contract while you will still be working under an industry lagging contract thru 2019 or beyond. United will also be in their second. Below is an excerpt from Delta's 2014 analyst call.

On pilot contract:

Jamie Baker - JP Morgan: First question as the labor drama played out in recent months at American Airlines, I'm curious if there's been any impact or sort of change in the tone of dialog between Delta management and its pilots? Does it remain a goal to try and settle before the amendable date and how confident are you that even with new economics you can succeed in keeping the consolidated ex fuel CASM under 2%?

Richard H. Anderson - Chief Executive Officer & Director: I think the answer to the first question is no change in our great relationship. We have made a commitment with our pilots to finish on time or ahead of schedule and we're confident we're going to be able to maintain our cost structure over the long term.

Jamie Baker - JP Morgan: If I could just squeeze in a third housekeeping question, I know you reserve the right to modify the profit sharing program, I didn't see anything in the release to suggest the 2015 break points would be any different, is that correct?

Richard H. Anderson - Chief Executive Officer & Director: That's correct.



RASM

Revenue Available Seat Mile (3rd Qtr 2014)

Delta Airline currently enjoys a 12% (rasm) advantage over AAL. This means that Delta passengers are willing to pay 12% (per mile) more for the opportunity to fly on Delta.

Is this because they have a better network that AAL?, don't think so. Does this mean the quality of the Delta product is better than AAL? Does it mean that Delta employees are more motivated, happier and more enthusiastic than AAL employees? Does the cooperative management/labor culture have any impact on how the employees treat their guests, the customer? Does profit sharing have anything to do with any of the above? We believe Delta management is CONVINCED it does.

AAL management has a couple of options to compete on RASM. One, they can continue to follow the philosophy that served them so successfully at LUS, cheap food, cheap (no-frills) fares and cheap LABOR.

Another option is to start being an innovator on quality product offerings (never have before), and truly change the culture by cultivating a labor force into motivated problem solvers. How about creating an airline that customers WANT to fly on, instead of HAVING too. Customers drive by Wal-Mart and Kmart everyday to enjoy the quality experience and service of Nordstrom's and Saks 5th Ave.

How about creating an atmosphere whereby employees enjoy their careers and WANT to come to work. Remember the days when you were proud of your company and were excited to be here?, oh so long ago.

Folks ask, "Do you think this company cares about bad press and disgruntled employees"? One could allege that as the largest airline in the world, they better care.

Your vote will have a major impact in determining which avenue this management and or the AAL BOD is inclined to take.

Delta CEO Richard Anderson said it best. "American will never catch Delta because they refuse to invest in their employees"

PLAN "B"

A common theme heard during the roadshows was, "What's plan "B" for a NO vote"?

These are some of the preliminary thoughts of your CLT reps:

Prepare our case for the February 2015 arbitration hearings, (3) arbitrators. This involves the request for an expedited order requiring the company to implement Green Book, don't think the company will like that.
Submit to AAL, required written notification of our intent to enter RLA Section 6 negotiations effective 1-1-2017 (early openers per MTA)
Implement previous designed National Comm. messages directed to the press and investors regarding adverse labor management conflicts at AAL (remember rasm)
Continue with plans to arrange a labor coalition-working group with other airline MEC's. Information sharing and contract cost comparison analysis among United, Delta and SWA would be extremely constructive in restoring the QOL and compensation of the airline profession. There is a stated desire by all parties to develop such a task force.
Prepare for mid-contract adjustment (MCA) in 2016.
Staff the analysis department to commensurate with the needs of the largest pilot union in the world.
Complete detailed review and recommendations for a complete re-write of the industry lagging Green Book. It's now time to starting adding benefits to the contract instead of removing items from it.


MERGER ISSUES

We listen to the daily pilot struggles under this management. Pilots are constantly fighting to be compensated correctly and have the company comply with EXISTING contractual language. As always, this management interprets contract language as it suits their particular need for that day/week/month. Yet another new pay grievance regarding split trips is forthcoming. Currently LAA pilots recieve 5:00 hours for a company split trip, LUS pilots recieve actual.

Most recently, thousands of AAL employees are fighting for health and dental benefits restoration because of yet ANOTHER company "IT" issue. Reports of spending hours on the phone with an understaffed benefits department for resolution are common.

The new company proposal is loaded with implementation timelines to be determined by "IT" availability. The proposed 5:10 Avg Day, is not effective until PBS which is estimated to be in 2016. The LUS pilots are scheduled to be the last group to go onto PBS. Standby to be the last group to receive 5:10 a day, here we go again. Ask the F/A's about their fiascos with PBS.

Bottom line, this company NEEDS all hands on deck giving 100% effort for the successful integration of the world's largest airline.

Mr. Parker and AAL BOD's, good luck accomplishing that with disenfranchised and angry employee groups. It's probably safe to assume that 51%, or every other employee on the property being disengaged is not going to result in "Going for Great".

LBFO (3) ?

During the American Airlines BK fiasco, the pilots of LAA were threatened with what is commonly known as LBFO (1) (last best final offer). Faced with the ominous uncertainty of a BK judge with 1113 power and indifferent creditors commitees, the LAA pilots faced credible threats. Collectively they stood strong, and voted NO to the "last best final offer" History shows there was more on the table and the pilots got it. Only strong unified resolve can attain results like that. As a side note, APA President David Bates (the strong verbal supporter of the companies LBFO 1) was subsequently forced to resign.

VALUATIONS

This is simple. The company takes, benefit them to the tune of $85 million dollars. The company offer, benefits the pilots to the tune of $65 million. End result, the pilots lose $20 million in the exchange. What a deal!

Now the advertised pay proposal equals $1.75 billion. Subtract $20 million and that nets $1.73 billion to the pilots.

NOT so fast. Realize that the $1.73 billion is based off of the MTA estimated pay rates. That document assumes NO 2016 raise for Delta. Any raise for Delta pilots effective 1-1-16, shrinks the $1.73 billion substantially. An 18.5% raise for Delta has the effect of reducing the $1.73 Billion to ZERO.

AAL and industry analysts are projecting a $7.5 billion dollar PROFIT for the year 2015 and beyond. Mind you, this is BEFORE all of the synergies. So let's understand this correctly. The company is in a position to potentially reap $30 billion plus dollars in profits over the life of this proposal, and your offered $1.73 and MAYBE "0".

A-321's

AAL just announced their 2015 fleet plans. Retiring from the fleet in 2015 are, (37) B-757's (9) B-767-300's and (6) B-767-200's.

The fleet-plan for 2015 will add (35) A-321's for a total of (174) of these aircraft. For many of those pilots currently enjoying the pay of Group 3, guess what. The good news (we guess) is the company is planning on flying A-321's to Europe and Hawaii.

Delta has A-321's on order, but currently no pay-scale for the aircraft. It would probably be safe to assume since the A-321 is the replacement for the 757/767 it will pay as such at Delta.

The Right Decision

A dilemma often debated at the road shows was, 'what's the right decision" vote YES or NO?

As a unionist representing the profession, the right decision is often clear. As an individual with a few years left before retirement, or a person overcome with adversity or debt, the decision is not so clear. Every person needs to search his or her inner self and make the decision that's appears right for them.

Considering the circumstances of where we've been and where we should be, the right personal decision for your CLT reps is to vote NO.

Given the financial prosperity of the industry now and in the forseeable future, we feel you all deserve better than the take it or leave it proposal the company is offering to the pilots of the world's largest and most profitable airline.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:48 PM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by Route66
And here it is, folks. The very reason why you are going to get the APA down the tubes here. The MOU that the West overwhelming voted for (blame here) are now crying why they are voting YES!! Just to "stick it" to the MAN....the "bad ole" East pilots. The guys who "stuck it" to the West pilots.

Every pilot "sticking it" to every pilot. Learned it from the APA, you know....the "Hitler youth".
So that's your convincing argument? You may stand down.

Remember the the LUSEast has an umblemished and unequaled record of being 100% wrong on everything they tried as USAPA. If you take their recommendation, you must acknowledge their record.
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Old 01-28-2015, 01:54 PM
  #79  
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And 66-
The votes of both East and West were irrelevant due solely to USAPA's decision to choose to prolong their do-nothing strategy over building unity. If every LUS pilot had voted NO, we would be exactly where we are today. If USAPA had never been allowed to see the light of day, we would be integrating AA into the US pilot group under a far superior contract than LOA93.

The responsibility for all this angst on the east lies squarely at their own doorstep.

They are not in a position to offer valid advice.
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Old 01-28-2015, 02:12 PM
  #80  
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Originally Posted by Bringupthebird
So that's your convincing argument? You may stand down.

Remember the the LUSEast has an umblemished and unequaled record of being 100% wrong on everything they tried as USAPA. If you take their recommendation, you must acknowledge their record.
Originally Posted by Bringupthebird
And 66-
The votes of both East and West were irrelevant due solely to USAPA's decision to choose to prolong their do-nothing strategy over building unity. If every LUS pilot had voted NO, we would be exactly where we are today. If USAPA had never been allowed to see the light of day, we would be integrating AA into the US pilot group under a far superior contract than LOA93.

The responsibility for all this angst on the east lies squarely at their own doorstep.

They are not in a position to offer valid advice.
Hey, I don't really care because when Friday rolls around the APA is going to be THE MOST IRRELEVANT UNION IN THE WORLD.......EVER. No matter WHICH way the vote goes guess who wins??

THE COMPANY! Listen to the analysis HERE:

http://edge.media-server.com/m/p/i97i3x82/lan/en

Don't vote it in, the Company saves $600 mil a year!!!!

You go guys.....GIVE IT TO THEM!!! G-I-V-E I-T T-O T-H-E-M!!!!

VOTE NO!!!!!!

Last edited by Route66; 01-28-2015 at 02:41 PM.
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