Feb 14 Republic Airways Holdings Inc
said on Friday that it reached a tentative accord for a
four-year labor contract with the Teamsters union, which
represents more than 2,200 pilots at its Republic, Chautauqua
and Shuttle America regional airline subsidiaries.
The agreement, which is subject to approval by union
members, comes after nearly seven years of talks and includes
pay raises, improved work rules and a signing bonus, Republic
said in a statement. A vote by the union membership is expected
in March, it said.
Republic's statement said the pay increases "will place
Republic at or near the top of its airline peers."
Dan Silbaugh, recording secretary with Teamsters Local 357,
which represents Republic pilots, declined to discuss pay and
other details of the tentative agreement, saying it had not been
presented to union members. Republic spokesman Peter Kowalchuk
also said the company would not disclose contents of the accord
until the union has shared it with members.
Indianapolis-based Republic said this week that its pretax
income would be reduced this year because it decided to cut its
planned flying due to a scarcity of qualified pilots.
The company's chief executive officer, Bryan Bedford, told
Reuters in an interview this week that the company had seen a
drop in the number of qualified applicants since U.S. Federal
Aviation Administration rules took effect last year that
increased flight-time requirements for pilots of commercial jets
and cargo planes.
In a letter to staff, Bedford had also addressed the
possibility that not having a new collective bargaining
agreement with pilots could be hurting the company's recruitment
Silbaugh said a starting first officer at Republic could
earn a range of $17,000 to $24,000 a year, based on current pay
Republic and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters
Local 357 began contract talks in 2007. Negotiations with a
federal mediator ran from June 2011 to October 2012, and talks
between the parties resumed in November 2012 with a private
mediator, Kowalchuk said.
Shares of Republic Airways were up 11 cents, or 1.25
percent, to $8.93 in afternoon trading.