Allegiant, union come to tentative agreement
By Kalea Hall
Allegiant Air Co. and the Airline Professionals Association Teamsters Local 1224 have reached a tentative contract agreement for the airline’s pilots.
Las Vegas-based Allegiant, which operates four air services at the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport in Vienna, issued a news release Wednesday on the tentative contract agreement.
The agreement must be ratified by the pilots, with results expected in late July.
“This contract, once approved by our pilots, will allow us to move into a new chapter at Allegiant,” said Maury Gallagher, chief executive officer of Allegiant, in a statement. “Our pilots are a vital part of our team, and we are looking forward to building a better future with them and for them.”
Allegiant and the union have been in negotiations through the National Mediation Board since February 2014. Allegiant pilots have been represented by the Teamsters since August 2012. This is the first contract agreement between the pilots and the company since electing union representation.
The teamsters and Allegiant will meet June 27 to finalize contract language.
The union said the agreement comes with “significant compensation, retirement and medical benefit increases, improved scheduling rules and procedures, strong job protections, and other important work-rule enhancements.”
“For years, we have been asking Allegiant Air to invest in its pilots, and Allegiant has listened,” said Cameron Graff, captain and the pilots’ executive council chairman, in a statement. “This contract brings us in line with industry standards that we, our families and customers deserve. With the new contract in place, we will have a voice at the table to make sure Allegiant Air is the best possible airline it can be.”
A strike almost interrupted Allegiant service temporarily in April 2015, but a court order prevented the pilots from striking on Easter weekend.
Pilots wanted the company to restore a former scheduling system and other benefits that they say were wrongfully rolled back over a two-year period.
“The Allegiant Air pilots have demonstrated tremendous determination and resilience over the last several turbulent years,” said Daniel C. Wells, Teamsters Local 1224 president, in a statement.
Allegiant offers flights to Orlando, Tampa, Fort Myers in Florida and Myrtle Beach, S.C., from the Youngstown airport.
Allegiant started in 1999 with one aircraft and one route. Today, the company has more than 80 aircraft and more than 300 routes.