St. Leibowitz

Aug 19, 2002
Louisville woos Republic Airline
By Chris Poynter
The Courier-Journal
New regional jet carrier would bring about 300 jobs to the area. The airline plans flights to and from major airlines'' hub airports.
Louisville is one of several cities competing for the corporate and maintenance headquarters of Republic Airline, a new regional jet carrier that plans flights to and from major airlines'' hub airports.
State economic development officials, along with the Regional Airport Authority board, have been secretly negotiating with the company for several months, discussing financial incentives in an attempt to lure the business to Louisville.
Republic Airline would be a subsidiary of Indianapolisbased Republic Airways, which also operates Chautauqua Airlines. Chautauqua provides service from smaller cities into hubs operated by American and Delta airlines, among others.
Louisville Metro Mayor Jerry Abramson, in an interview with The Courier-Journal, yesterday declined to name the airline, but said the carrier would bring about 300 ''''good paying'''' jobs to the city -- and eventually could lead to expanded flights between Louisville and other cities.
''''Right now it''s in the hands of the state,'''' Abramson said.
The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development does not comment on potential deals, spokeswoman Terri Bradshaw said.
The cabinet''s finance authority board, which must approve incentives the state offers to companies, will meet at 10 a.m. tomorrow in Frankfort. The agenda is not made public until the meeting starts, Bradshaw said, because of the sensitivity of economic development deals.
A spokesman for Republic Airways Holdings, the parent company of Republic Airline, declined to comment yesterday.
Regional jets -- which usually seat 50 to 70 people -- are increasingly replacing major jets, especially in small and medium-sized cities such as Louisville, according to the Regional Airline Association in Washington D.C.
Last November, for example, US Airways pulled its largest jets out of Louisville, replacing them with regional jets and turboprop aircraft.
David Castelveter, spokesman for the Arlington, Va., airline, said at the time that economic reasons led to the phasing out of the Boeing 737-300s that US Airways used on its Louisville flights to Charlotte and Pittsburgh. (Other destinations from Louisville already are served by the smaller aircraft.)
After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the airline retired many of its larger planes as passenger loads dropped, Castelveter said.
Debby McElroy of the Regional Airline Association said 15 companies nationwide operate regional jets. McElroy said she is aware of Republic starting another airline but said she didn''t know which cities it was considering as a headquarters.
J. Michael Brown, airport board chairman, said Louisville is among ''''three or four cities'''' vying to become the airline''s headquarters and maintenance base. He didn''t know what other cities were in the running.
Abramson said he did know which cities were courting the airline, but he declined to name them.
He said the potential new regional airline would be headquartered at Louisville International, with planes flying to there from other cities for maintenance.
Abramson said he expects that having the corporate and maintenance headquarters here would lead to increased passenger flights -- both to cities that Louisville currently serves and perhaps others that it doesn''t.
''''It''s a win-win,'''' he said.
The jobs created by the airline would be a mix of white-collar corporate positions and blue-collar maintenance workers, the mayor said.
Abramson said he was briefed about the development last November, as part of his merger transition. As mayor, he now sits on the airport authority board and attended the January meeting, where the board discussed the issue behind closed doors.
Airport General Manager Jim DeLong declined to comment yesterday.
Brown said he couldn''t comment in depth about the negotiations because they are being handled by the state.
The state''s involvement is vital to landing any airline headquarters, Brown said, because the state -- and not the airport itself -- can offer financial incentives, such as tax breaks.
As part of its ongoing terminal renovation, the airport is spending $7.5 million to add six gates for regional jets.
Brown said they are being added because more airlines are relying on smaller regional jets to shuttle passengers to major hubs. He also noted that having the gates in place could help attract a regional airline company.
People who currently fly regional jets to and from Louisville have to step out of the terminal to board the planes.


Jan 18, 2003
Does this look familiar,, hint hint "Freedumb Air" They are planning to use furloughed U pilots for the NEW airline..By the way word on the street is that Freedumb is history and will be intergrated into the MESA seniority list,IF mesa accepts the new TA that managment has put forth. U pilots are being so set up for the the greed and contempt of the NEW era regional airlines. And ALPA is going to let you guys twist in the wind, what the hell is wrong with all you mainline guys ALPA people, your union didnt care when you got your ass kicked by Wolf and now for a second ass whippen by the CHQ and MESA managment.. WOW what times we live in..
Jan 29, 2003
Does anyone else have a problem with this new trend? This is the second time now an airline has been created to circumvent existing contracts. This is an issue for all pilots, mainline/wholly owneds/contracted, this shows that management has no problem with going behind any Union's back in order to make a deal.

Its starting with US Airways, and last time I checked Airways isn't the only airline in trouble and definitely isn't the only airline looking to increase RJ flying.

I don't care if you are ALPA, Teamsters, or anything else, the new precedent has been set: If you as a pilot group are unwilling to give into managements terms, fine, they'll create a new airline that will. Their message is simple, comply or be replaced.

By allowing this to continue without resistance we give away any "power in numbers" that has been built up over the last 50 years. This trend steals away all bargaining power that the Unions had.

Time to buy some KY stock

Chicken Taco

Aug 29, 2002
This Republic startup is an abomination! There's a reason that contracts have "scope" restrictions: to ensure that the pilots protected by the agreement are entitled to the work that is rightfully due to them. CHQ's contract strictly prohibits the company from starting any "alter-ego" carrier to sidestep any provisions of the contract. What's happening here is that CHQ's PARENT company is starting an alter-ego. While this is legal in the strictest sense of the law, it is certainly not what was intended. When the current CHQ contract was signed, the company was independant, hence no "company or it's parent" wording.

However, it is apparent in this case that Republic Holdings is simply out for a cheap buck at the expense of Chautauqua's 615 pilots. Mesa Air Group tried this with Freedumb, and it looks like it will be quashed with the signing of Mesa's new contract. Freedom has had a hard time getting staff anyway, as the stigma of working for such a union-busting company will follow a pilot through his entire career.

It's apparent that management at the regional level certainly has none but their own best interests in mind and will continue to attempt cheap sidesteps at the expense of hard-working employees who have already paid their dues. I for one will not let this stand, and I urge every one who reads this to make your voices heard. Obviously you're familiar with the industry or you wouldn't have read this far. Please ensure that all of your friends and co-workers are aware of the situation, and please take a stand.

[edited for typos by CT]

St. Leibowitz

Aug 19, 2002
Just a thought:

Accepting a position with RP would potentially place you in the same position in which RP has placed the CHQ pilots; depending on what Wexford thinks you are worth. I might add that by the creation of the alter-ego RP, and the impetus behind said creation, Wexford has already quite clearly demonstrated that. Caveat Emptor.
Jan 29, 2003
This whole situation just plain SUCKS! The effects of these new airlines are going to be a plague on this industry forever.

What happens five years down the road when the Freedom/Republic pilots are ready for increase in quality of life? Are we going to see two more new airlines emerge so that management can keep operating on THEIR terms? How do you negotiate when they just create an alter ego airline that will do YOUR flying under THEIR rules?

This stinks folks, and its just gonna get a lot more rancid if nothing is done. ALPA or Teamsters, we all need to be together on this one!


Jan 30, 2003
Would it make a difference if the newly formed Republic Airways was unionized or not? It seems that most of the griping is related to the company attmepting to get around the binds of a union.

St. Leibowitz

Aug 19, 2002
AIN Online:

Regionals Update by Gregory Polek


Judge Gives Green Light to US Airways-Republic Plan
Federal bankruptcy court judge Stephen Mitchell has approved US Airways’ plan to enter into a new operating agreement with Indianapolis-based Republic Airways that calls for the introduction of another 32 regional jets into the US Airways Express system. The ruling gives Republic the catalyst it needs to launch a new nonunionized operating unit separate from its Chautauqua Airlines subsidiary, established specifically to fly the new batch of jets.

Although an airline spokesman declined to comment on any plans for a new operating unit, a spokesman for the local US Airways chapter of the Air Line Pilots Association confirmed that Republic management planned to start the new operation some time during this year’s “second or third quarter.†The move bears a conspicuously close resemblance to Mesa Air Group’s plans for its own nonunion operating unit called Freedom Airlines. Both Mesa’s and Chautauqua’s pilot groups voted not to accept the controversial “Jets for Jobs†provision in US Airways’ collective-bargaining agreement with ALPA, developments that essentially blocked the affiliates from adding more regional jets to their US Airways Express fleets.

Jets for Jobs requires that the airlines staff at least half of their new RJ positions with furloughed US Airways pilots. Both Republic and Freedom could potentially participate in Jets for Jobs with their nonunionized units, allowing them to continue to expand their US Airways Express fleets. ALPA, however, has filed suit against Mesa in an attempt to block Freedom Airlines from opening. An ALPA spokesman added that the union does not condone Republic’s plan, despite the jobs it could produce for US Airways pilots. The Teamsters–the union that represents Chautauqua’s pilots–at press time had yet to publicly air its position on the matter.


Oct 17, 2002
Someone above asked how we could let management do this to. Its simple. If it benefits the mainline pilot group, ALPA will back it, giving any airline management the green light to create an alter-ego carrier.The CHQ pilots voted down J4J (IN IT'S CURRENT FORM). Therefore, Wexford created Republic. Union busting/pressuring? Sure it is, but that won't stop the U furloughed guys from lining up at the door. As I have stated before, All of the rah-rah union, brotherhood for life, watch out for your fellow pilots, preserve the profession and all of the precedence on which ALPA is supposedly based go flying out the window into the $hit can when it will benefit the mainline pilots. U could have had all of the RJ flying it wanted (and all of the mainline furloughed pilots hired) ALREADY, had ALPA and the U MEC not attempted to back-door its' own union members


Aug 20, 2002
Here is some info that chq gave its pilot group...

Q. What is Republic Airlines?
A. Republic Airlines is a start up airline that will operate as US Airways Express.

Q. Why is Republic flying RJ’s for Airways?
A. Because it will adopt the Jets for Jobs [J4J] pilot hiring protocols.

Q. How many RJ’s will Republic operate?
A. Between 20 and 23 aircraft.

Q. Will Chautauqua get any more RJ’s for Airways?
A. Yes, between 9 and 12 additional aircraft.

Q. How can Chautauqua get more RJ’s with out complying with the J4J protocols?
A. Because Chautauqua’s J4J pilot hiring liability will be absorbed by Republic.

Q. Isn’t Republic an “alter-ego†carrier?
A. No. Republic will be a union carrier and it will comply with J4J.

Q. If there were no Republic would Chautauqua get all the new RJ’s?
A. No, if there were no Republic, there would be no new RJ’s for anyone.

Q. If Chautauqua pilots had accepted J4J would there still be a Republic?
A. No, it would not have been necessary.

Q. Is it too late for the Chautauqua pilots to reverse their decision on J4J?
A. Yes, because Republic has given Airways a lower cost deal than Chautauqua’s.

Q. Could Republic operate planes for any of our other code-share partners?
A. No. Chautauqua is the exclusive provider for AMR, AWA and DAL.

Q. Could Republic operate for a new code share partner?
A. Yes, if Airways consents.

Q. Are there any plans to expand Republic beyond Airways?
A. No.

Q. If Airways liquidates will there still be a Republic?
A. No, there would be no need since there would be no new RJ’s for Airways.

So if I understand this right, Republic will be staffed by 100% furloughed mainline pilots who will get to enjoy a non union outfit with work rules/pay even less than what little the Chautauqua pilots make...?

Sounds like fun!

All of this obviously an alter ego end run around the Teamster's contract. And the Airways ALPA voicing disapproval one one hand while not bothering to do anything about it on the other, nice...

You Airways pilots should be real proud of yourselves. This is what I meant retread when your leadership is responsible.



You are correct. We should of kept our scope the way it was.