November 6, 2009
By Alton K. Marsh
The NetJets pilots union, the NetJets Association of Shared Aircraft Pilots (NJASAP), has received notice that NetJets Aviation plans to furlough 495 pilots possibly in mid-January.
“After several months of continuous efforts to mitigate a pilot furlough, we have reached a point at which the economic realities that challenge our employer can no longer be offset by the ground-breaking initiatives implemented earlier this year,” NJASAP President Capt. Mark Luthi said. In April, the parties launched voluntary actions intended to alleviate the overstaffing issue. Despite widespread participation, NetJets has concluded the initiative is no longer sustainable. A second attempt to stave off a furlough was made late last month to reduce the number of anticipated layoffs.
The union has launched a Web-based Furloughed Pilot Resource Center and has prepared a resource guide that outlines financial, unemployment, and worker retraining benefits as well as alternate insurance options and various assistance grants.
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
AOPA expressed concern in a meeting with town officials from East Hampton, New York, that restrictions proposed to curb airport noise “overwhelmingly” generated by transient commercial flights would unfairly burden traditional airport users.
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