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America West Merger Committee Update January 28, 2015

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We have been busy at work on your behalf over the past three weeks since the Preliminary Arbitration Award, and would like to update you about a few items.

 

WEST MERGER COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN

 

We are pleased to announce that we have officially appointed Captain Russ Payne as Chairman of the West Merger Committee. As most of you know, Russ served on the America West Merger Committee under ALPA during the America West / US Airways merger, and was a key participant throughout the Nicolau arbitration process and subsequent litigation. Given Russ' experience with seniority integration matters and his time-tested working relationship with our legal team, we believe Russ is the most logical choice to serve in this role.

 

THE NICOLAU AWARD

 

Many of you rightfully are bit fuzzy as to the status of the Nicolau Award after the latest iteration of court battles and arbitrations, and have asked us to explain how the Nicolau Award might become part of the new American Airlines seniority list.

 

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America West Merger Committee Update January 9, 2015

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We are pleased to announce that the Preliminary Arbitration panel has issued an award granting the America West Merger Committee's request to be designated as an independent, autonomous merger committee in the McCaskill-Bond seniority integration process. The Award states, in part:

 

[T]he Board concludes that APA's designation of a West Pilots Merger Committee is consistent with the Protocol and MOU; is consistent with the McCaskill-Bond requirement that the SLI process be fair and equitable; is a proper and reasonable exercise of its discretion; and is fully consistent with APA's duty of fair representation to all Company pilots. Indeed, in this particular case, the Board concludes that fairness and equity demand the appointment of a West Pilot Merger Committee to participate in the SLI process.

 

We have posted the Award on our website at www.west-merger-committee.com.

 

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America West Merger Committee Update December 14, 2014

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Tomorrow, December 15, marks an important day for all America West pilots: the beginning of the Preliminary Arbitration hearings to determine whether or not the America West pilots will be granted the right to autonomously represent ourselves in the upcoming McCaskill-Bond seniority integration process. Or, more importantly, whether or not USAPA will finally be relieved of the ability to unilaterally dictate the US Airways seniority list that will be used for the integration of the American Airlines and US Airways pilots.

 

As we previously reported to you, all parties to the process, American Airlines, APA, the APA merger committee, USAPA, and the East, West, and American Airlines merger committees, have submitted pre-hearing briefs to the arbitration panel. The purpose of the briefs is to explain in advance the dispute and the positions of the parties. We have posted the briefs on our website: www.west-merger-committee.com

 

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America West Merger Committee Update December 19, 2014

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The Preliminary Arbitration hearings in Washington D.C concluded on December 17. The hearings spanned three full days, culminating in closing arguments by all parties in the afternoon. The Protocol Agreement asks that the arbitrators issue an award within 30 days of the close of the hearings, which would be Friday, January 16, 2015. 

As we stated in our previous communications, we have adopted the practice of the former AWA ALPA Merger Committee of not providing commentary during the pendency of hearings, and instead posting all hearing transcripts on the internet as soon as they become available. All three days of hearing transcripts are available on our website www.west-merger-committee-com. We did our best to provide an objective summary of the issues that were to be argued in the Preliminary Arbitration before the hearings began, and the transcripts themselves best describe how the parties tackled those issues in the hearing itself. 

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America West Merger Committee Update December 11, 2014

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We regret that the limited number of observer seats at the Preliminary Arbitration have now all been spoken for by RSVP. All America West pilots who have already sent an RSVP will be able to attend, and we will send confirmation emails, along with attendance instructions, directly to you. If you do find yourself in the Washington DC area during the arbitration dates and you would like to attend the hearing, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. the day of the hearing see if space has become available.

 

Despite the limited ability to attend the hearing in person, all pilots will be able to stay informed regarding the proceedings by reviewing the daily hearings transcripts. The hearing transcripts from each day will be posted on our website the day after each hearing day. Our website address is:

 

www.west-merger-committee.com