Coverage of the merger between American Airlines and US Airways

American Airlines, Pilots Not as Close to New Tentative Deal

Union source says no offer being considered

By Chris Van Horne
|  Thursday, Nov 1, 2012  |  Updated 6:38 PM CDT
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A deal between American Airlines and its pilots may not be as close as originally thought just a few days ago.

Chris Van Horne, NBC 5 Fort Worth Reporter

A deal between American Airlines and its pilots may not be as close as originally thought just a few days ago.

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A deal between American Airlines and its pilots may not be as close as originally thought just a few days ago.

The Allied Pilots Association board scheduled three days of meetings, starting on Wednesday, to review the latest negotiations with the airline.

However, an APA source told NBC 5 that the board is not considering anything because negotiators don't have a good enough offer to bring before the board. But the APA and American are continuing with their negotiations on a new deal.

Earlier this week, the union told its members that a tentative deal could be reached within a matter of days. On Wednesday, even while pilots demonstrated at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, both sides spoke optimistically that a deal was getting close.

The pilots rejected the Fort Worth-based airline's "last, best and final offer" earlier this year. Since then, the pilots union has conducted surveys and followed up with its members to see what it would take for them to approve a deal.

A union representative said on Wednesday that the two major sticking points for them remained pay and outsourcing.

Aviation expert Denny Kelly said he expected to hear of a deal as early as this week, as he said the pressure is on both sides to get something done soon.

"There's a lot of pressure on both sides to reach an agreement," he said. "The company wants to come out of bankruptcy, and the pilots need to do something livable before the judge does something."

Kelly said he thinks there is still a chance that some kind of a deal could be reached within the next seven to 10 days. However, it will be tough to get through the membership as there are different groups of pilots seeking different things, he said.

"It's going to be tough to get it signed," Kelly said.

Kelly said American Airlines really wants to get out of bankruptcy and getting a pilots contract finished would help them do that.


American Airlines Merger:
Complete coverage of the merger between American Airlines and US Airways into the newly-formed Fort Worth-based company, American Airlines Group (AAL). Click here for more.

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