Pension & Productivity Changes



Today the Department of Labor said the nations economy lost jobs for the consecutive second month in October and the unemployment rate grew to 5.7 percent, providing another indication an economic recovery is stalling out.
The data may heighten expectations the Federal Open Market Committee will once again cut interest rates at its November 6 policy meeting.
If the Fed cuts rates, this will further place stress on defined benefit pension plans when 2002 actuary data is released in July 2003. With the PBGC a sitting/voting US Airways credtors committee member, this is likely to be a key event in the company's restructuring effort.
Some observers believe without changes to the pension plans across-the-board, US Airways will not be able to emerge from bankruptcy. Therefore, reports indicate the company and its labor unions are discussing ways to resolve this issue.
In addition, there are reports within the company that management is seeking ways to boost productivity. The following restructuring agreements state:
ALPA follow on discussion items are
1. Replace the current bid system with a Preferential bid system.
2. Modify the Reserve system.
3. Eliminate individual trip sign-in and automate the AIL.
4. Relax scheduling restrictions.
5. Modify rescheduling pay to scheduled or actual, for segments that operate.
6. Create on-premise reserves.
7. Combine B767D and B767I flying.
8. Use of medical/disabled pilots to conduct simulator training.
9. Establish training lines to reduce bought trips.
10. Permit pilot to move early to new bid to avoid inactive with pay status.
11. Permit use of TDY of up to contractual limits or extend training hold until next training class if a pilot is unable to report for initial training event and would become inactive with pay.
The Flight Attendant restructuring agreement says under SECTION 30: GENERAL New S. Productivity Offset:

No later than 30 days following the ratification of this Agreement, the parties shall commence negotiations over productivity improvements (including an “early-outâ€￾ program if such program has not previously been agreed to prior to the date of ratification). Any savings that result from agreed to productivity improvements or an early-out program shall be returned to flight attendants in increased wage rates. The negotiations referenced above shall not be held pursuant to Section 6 of the Railway Labor Act.
For the IAM, the mechanic restructuring agreement says under Productivity Exchange:
The parties agree to meet to discuss modifications to IAM's collective bargaining agreement to allow IAM represented employees to buy-back wage concessions in exchange for productivity.
In addition, a standing committee of Union and Management Members will be established no later than January 1, 2003 with the responsibility of exploring and implementing measures to achieve cost savings by insourcing of work, improving the efficiency of operations and/or by any other methods that create cost savings for US Airways.
CWA & TWU restructuring agreements
The CWA restructuring agreement does not contain any language regarding further productivity discussions and its unclear if any of the three TWU units contain further productivity discussion language.


Aug 20, 2002
Questions: (1) With all this talk about pension plan changes, do you think it will give senior people (alpa) some incentive to get out early? (2) Have all mandatory retirements been factored into the furloughs for '03? (3) Any hope for those on/about to be on furlough, especially with all the fragmentation/merger rumors?


Aug 20, 2002
Im still befuddled on this new productivity and pension kick... If these were make or break items , please someone explain to me why they werent dealt with at the time we all reneg our contracts.... Nothing economy wise has changed, nor has the terriosm outlook on this country. You didnt have to be a rocket scientist to see it wasnt getting better anytime soon....


Sep 17, 2002

Here is some advice. If you are or are about to be furloughed do NOT even consider staying with this airline. This is a dead horse if your seniority number is higher than 2000. Move on and don't look back. As tough as that sounds, that (imho) is the reality. You have a degree or you wouldn't be here. Use it. Or find a different flying job with a different company.



Aug 28, 2002
[P]The CWA agreement didn't discuss any productivity changes because the CWA productivity for res is at one of the, if not the, highest in the industry. If there were any more improvement, the CWA folks would have to be perfect. The CWA folks do not have a pension plan, so that isn't an option for change either. I honestly do not know what else could be changed. Believe me, with 14 years here, I would like to see another 20 more. I'm just not sure and I believe we are all getting a bit scared, I know I am. Any good news yet?[/P]