Republic Update

St. Leibowitz

Aug 19, 2002
June 27, 2003

Letter from General Counsel E.E. Sowell to Chautauqua CEO Bryan Bedford Concerning Negotiations

June 27, 2003

Dear Mr. Bedford:

Your letter of June 26, 2003 was non-responsive to the Union’s demand that we wanted a firm contractual commitment from you, as the CEO of Republic Airways Holdings, Inc., that Republic Airlines would not operate if we reach an agreement on the Chautauqua contract. As you know, that is the single most important obstacle preventing the parties from reaching a deal. It must be resolved if we are to reach an agreement.

Your letter was also a bit premature in your assessment of the parties’ lack of progress at the table. Both negotiating teams worked hard this week and we closed out the Training section and made considerable progress on the Scheduling section. Save for the Republic issue, progress this week has been at an acceptable pace but we simply ran out of time. As I informed you on the telephone several weeks ago and as your negotiating team is well aware, I will be out of the Country from Sunday, June 29th until July 17, 2003. Therefore, it will be impossible to meet over the weekend.

Bryan, US Airways is certainly an interested party in what airline operates under a J4J agreement, however, we have been informed that US Airways could care less about Republic Airlines. Their only interest is to start the code sharing operation as soon as possible and they are agreeable to Chautauqua flying under the J4J code sharing agreement. The Chautauqua pilot group ratified the J4J agreement in March 2003. The J4J agreement that was ratified contained the same economic terms that you had agreed to in June of last year. From the Union’s perspective, it is Chautauqua that is delaying the US Airways J4J flying. We could have been operating now under the agreement, rather than being leveraged at the bargaining table with the formation of the alter ego, Republic Airlines.

Contrary to your past assurances that Republic Airlines would only operate under the J4J US Airways code sharing agreement, we have read numerous DOT filings that Republic Airlines intends to operate under code sharing agreements with numerous mainline carriers. Most troubling is the latest DOT filing by Republic that Republic Airlines will be flying current Chautauqua Airline US Airways code sharing routes out of SDF as its first two lines of flying targeted for October 1, 2003. I am sure you understand our concerns and position that Republic Airlines’ operation poses a direct job threat to our pilots and therefore it must not operate. As the CEO of Republic Airways Holdings, Inc., you certainly have the authority to stop Republic Airlines from operating.

The next negotiation session is scheduled for July 29th through July 31, 2003 in Indianapolis, Indiana. We would encourage your attendance at that session. The issues have been narrowed to economics. The ball is in your court.

Very truly yours,

E.E. Sowell
General Counsel

cc: Chautauqua Executive Council
US Airways MEC
Gee, maybe Chautauqua could code-share with Republic who code shares with USAirways Inc...........
St. Leibowitz-

Why not post someting more interesting like the recent company update from "Crybaby Bedford." Now that might get some interesting responses!

Keep up the good fight!
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FL 370-

Yeah, that has us rolling our eyes. I was quite tempted to copy/paste that here and elsewhere, but there is this pesky "Copyright 2003, Republic Airways Holdings..." at the bottom of the page. The Company has a track record with stuff like that and while I (along with a significant majority of the pilots) have our heels dug in, I am hesitant to set myself up for martyrdom. Also, I posted the letter above more for the reference to Republic as it pertains to j4j; as the general labor issues in progress at CHQ are of somewhat less significance to the readers on this board than are the specific references to j4j. For those of you who may be curious, a search of "Republic" and/or "Chautauqua" on the Flightinfo "General" and "Interview:Regional" boards will bring you up to speed on the situation at CHQ, albeit from a somewhat biased viewpoint.

The "high points" to Bedford's letter to which FL370 referred basically state that:

1) He is disappointed at the results of the strike vote, (and he spun the numbers really hard) and this is the first time he has regretted being at CHQ.

2) Chautauqua is a good place to work since only 70 or so pilots have left since 1999 (fails to acknowledge that the vast majority of those left prior to 9/11.

2) There are 1000 resumes on file and pilots can be easily replaced, (probably true, but we know that and of the 75% who voted, 94% voted in favor anyway).

3) CHQ has lost financing for 3 U airframes due to "labor instability," but the upside to that is the training department will be under less pressure.

4) He is not intimidated.

Question for Chip:

I asked a few weeks back about the ML's position with regard to CHQ and Republic; specifically the letter to Dave stating that the Association "[saw] no need for Republic." You replied you would look into it. Any further information in that regard?