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The View From 33

ALPA Council 33 Newsletter
Tim Morrison, Chair
OE Lines:
A lineholder awarded an OE line is basically abdicating his or her seniority. To make up for this, the lineholder is paid 84 hours for that month. If you check the removal from line box on the mobids screen, you will be taken off the line and put on reserve for those days you would have flown. This is done in seniority order. If you are on reserve, you cannot participate in the big pick, but you can pick up flying that will completely fill the consecutive days on reserve. Once you pick up a trip or trips, you can now trade the trip away as a normal lineholder would. The trip can be picked up after the big pick is closed and prior to 28 hours before its departure time. Look for a change to the current OE line system via the Total Airline Pilot program.

Shuttle Line Reduction Explained:
The Shuttle line total went from 30 in December to 24 in January. The reason for this was that the company was caught violating the Shuttle agreement and side letter. Referencing letter 94-1 1 (page 337) and Attachment A (page 347) of the contract, the SSC cited violations to Attachment A, paragraph 1. The quality of

Shuttle flying in DEN has steadily declined because of multiple deadheads, long sits, plane changes, and low flight- time pairings. The Shuttle agreement is very specific about DSL quality, and the company has chosen to ignore this. Unlike the mainline, the Shuttle has contractual language governing how DSLs are built. When the DEN LSC discovered the violation, the company had no choice but to remedy the violation. The company then removed the DSLs that caused the violations, thereby reducing the number of lines in DEN. The next question is: When do we get the flying back in DEN? Manpower planning has crews to cover 30 lines, and now with 24 lines we see six crews extra on reserve. The company has not told us what the interm fix is to this problem. Look for more TDY to SFO as you saw in January. The LSC suggested that a fix to the DSL contract violation in January was to pay the Shuttle pilots mainline pay since the flying was of mainline quality. The company did not choose this option.

November SSC Meeting Items:
With regard to the SSC parameters on DSL quality. DEN enjoyed an improvement in most areas of mainline flying. These parameters are sits over three hours, duty time over 12 hours, deadheads, early east departures, all-nighters, sleep opportunity loss, and cross-towns. The particularly onerous ANC -300 all-nighters were improved at our request. Cross-towns were all but eliminated. The DEN LSC protested a number of 767 and -300 all-nighters that violate the guidelines: 767 IDs 442, 443-, -300 IDs 302, 327, 360, 369. We also requested more bumps for the 737-200.

Vacancy Bids:
Company-proposed bids for added coverage are five 727 first officers. The SSC recommendations were as follows: 767, eight captains, seven first officers-, 320, four captains-- 727, 12 first officers. The company made no changes.

MIA A-320:
The current economic situation in Latin America has United in a serious over-capacity situation. Look for the 767 to be pulled and the 320 to start flying MIA to South America. The 767s will then be replacing some 777 routes, and, as we know, the 777 will be going to the Pacific as the 747 is pulled down there.

Vacation Deferral:
The company did not meet its goal for deferrals, so they are soliciting again. They still will not plan a buyback and will likely find themselves paying their debt of vacation by reducing flyina in April and May. The deferral 'ust continues to push the problem further into the future. 

Block Time Add:
Between April and June 1999, the company will add one minute to the block times for all mainline flights. Hopefully, this will improve on-t'tiie reliability at an approximate cost of $3 million per year.

DC-10 Base Closings:
The company stated that they tiil,,Yht have to close one of the domestic bases to consolidate DC10 flying. The SSC's position is that staffing should be shrunk at each domicile and then all bases should be closed simultaneously. A decision is expected later next year.

PLTCM/File #:
This new Unimatic page had only two responses last month. If you have used this page and ,gotten no response, please let me know.

The planned flying level has been reduced for 1999. Pilot hiring is expected to continue with a total of about 500 pilots for next year, with more hiring in the early pan of the year.

This new line-building program is used to build all domestic lines. For January, there was an excessive mixing of flying done by the program in order to reach target-line average values. When staffing is adequate, 78 hours are set as the line average. When staffing is short, 81 hours are used. The 78- to 81 -hour windows are already too restrictive to build good lines. Further restricting the window in order to accomplish manpower balancing is devastating to the quality of the lines. While the contract acknowledges that some mixing of pairings must be done, it was also expected that only a minimum of mixing should be done. AFLYER is making no attempt to build lines as prescribed by the contract! Read Section 20.C. I of the contract. The SSC will be watching this.

PBS Update:
A Preferential Bidding System will not be up and running until late 1999. The SSC has stated that any system used must have a complete set of parameters that can be entered using a Windows-type point-and-click environment.

Closed-loop flying:
Much of the LAX-SFO flying has been contained in a closed loop to improve schedule reliability. This appears to be working. The company is also considering putting SEA-SFO into a closed loop.

Last trip cancellations:
OPB does not seem to give adequate consideration to cancellations of the last trip of the night and the impact on Shuttle pilots. CM stated that they would enlist the help of Hart Langer to solve this problem, as both departments do not seem to be coordinating well under his office.

Look for more secondary lines next year, and remember to preference the unadvertised ones with "999."