American Airlines gets judge's nod on pilots agreement
BY D.R. STEWART World Staff Writer
Thursday, December 20, 2012
12/20/12 at 4:06 AM
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U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Sean Lane on Wednesday approved the collective bargaining agreement between American Airlines and the Allied Pilots Association.
Lane's ruling means American has gotten court-approved labor contracts with the APA, the Transport Workers Union and the Association of Professional Flight Attendants.
The pilots' collective bargaining agreement was approved by a nearly 3-to-1 margin in a ratification vote that concluded Dec. 7.
In a related development, Lane denied a motion by the Supplement B Pilot Beneficiaries and the American Independent Cockpit Alliance seeking to preserve the lump sum benefit in a pilot pension plan.
Lane's ruling on the motion enables American to freeze, rather than terminate, the pilots' A pension plan, said APA spokesman Gregg Overman.
Preserving the pilots' ability to take lump sum payouts of their pensions could have had negative effects on American's finances and operations, AMR said in court documents.
The APA's collective bargaining agreement includes 31 percent to 39 percent wage increases over six years, a 13.5 percent equity stake in the post-bankruptcy American Airlines, a 14 percent company contribution to the pilots' 401(k) plan, a $750 deductible medical plan and APA's $5 million reimbursement by the company for bankruptcy expenses.
In August, APA members rejected the company's previous contract offer.
Lane granted AMR's motion to nullify the pilots' collective bargaining agreement in September, after which the pilots began reporting a significant increase in maintenance and equipment problems, causing hundreds of flight delays and cancellations.
American management and the APA resumed contract negotiations in October.
APA members approved the tentative contract agreement by a vote of 5,489 (74 percent) in favor and 1,951 (26 percent) opposed.
Original Print Headline: Judge OKs agreement between AA, pilots
D.R. Stewart 918-581-8451