ssides
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Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 1:06 am

Interesting article in the Dallas Morning News outlining different lawmakers' positions on the Wright Amendment:

http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/bus/stories/021105dnbuswright.2c6ff.html

SUMMARY:

Five lawmakers from the eastern (Dallas) side of the Metroplex say the Amendment's time has come and it needs to be repealed.

Sam Johnson (R): "I think it's outlived its usefulness. [But] That doesn't mean it's going to be repealed this year."

Jeb Hensarling (R): "Whatever rationale there was at one time for the Wright amendment, I think we have grown way beyond it," he said. "There's not one resident of the 5th Congressional District that doesn't have to drive past Love Field on the way to DFW."

Pete Sessions (R): "We need better fares. We need more competition."

Three lawmakers, mostly from the Ft. Worth side, oppose repeal of the Amendment.

Joe Barton (R): "I appreciate what's best for Southwest Airlines, but that doesn't mean that's what's best for the country."

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R): "My responsibility is to make sure that we keep the commitments made to the two communities [Dallas and Fort Worth] for DFW Airport to be the major airport and to stay economically healthy."

The article also mentions how Tennessee lawmakers have been pushing for the Amendment's repeal.

It also contains links to letters from Nashville requesting the repeal, along with an DFW letter to Tampa and a Southwest letter to Tampa concerning the Amendment.


There you go. Discuss amongst yourselves.


"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
 
ValkyrieRamp
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 1:36 am

My first reaction to reading Mr. Fegan's letter was two fold. First, he is a man who forgets his history. WN never signed the original agreement to move to DFW. In fact, the airlines (Braniff and TI) that did sign it - why I don't believe still exist, do they? These are in fact the competition that kept WN out of the airline business between 1966 and June 18, 1971. Second has Mr. Fegan ever heard of the Sherman Anti-trust act?

We live in an era where doing things the old way is guaranteed to produce business as usual and lose money. DFW's management needs to worry about issues at their own airport not dictating how other airports carry out their business plans.
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LoneStarMike
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 3:44 am

My heart just sank when I read the part that said Houston, Phoenix, and Oakland were choosing to remain neutral. Houston I can understand --Big hub for Continental and Hobby has grown at the expense of Dallas due to restrictions at DAL vs. none at Hobby. But Oakland and Phoenix surprised me. Isn't there ongoing or planned construction at PHX and OAK for Southwest? Hopefully LAS will support Southwest.

LoneStarMike

 
1MillionFlyer
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 3:51 am

Nashville lawmakers are behind WN on this repeal. It has been on the news quite a bit lately
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qxq400
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:07 am

With all the success of WN there constant whining about the wright admendment is really sad. They had there chance to move to DFW they did not want to. Live with your decision and quite your crying.

Do you thing AA will really let WN and other law makers repeal this decision? NO! that would be the end of there strangle hold on DFW. One just has to look at how AA deals with other airlines to see that (Aircal,Reno air,TWA).
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mozart
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:18 am

OK guys, just ignore my posting if you think I am interrupting with a discussion of knowledgeable people here, but if you can spare a moment to explain to me a couple of things, I really would be grateful. This entire Wright amendment sage is quite interesting, but other than its existence I am unaware of the stories and trends around it, hard to follow from Europe:

- I understand the Wright amendment was signed at the time to give the then new DFW a good starting chance. Right?
- Why did WN never move to DFW? Is it their logic that proximity to city center is more important than the ability to fly wherever they want? Or are the fees at DAL that much lower?
- Fegan's letter: he complains about the impact on the Texas economy by the fact that DL has closed its hub there, and how WN's refusal to fill the gap will make that a lasting effect. But then, if WN gets the right to serve DL's routes from DAL, the economy would benefit after all, right? Maybe not at DFW airport, but in the region?

Thanks for replies to this newbie question. If I can help you out with issues between CDG and ORY or LHR and LGW, feel free....  Wink/being sarcastic
 
ssides
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:39 am

Why did WN never move to DFW? Is it their logic that proximity to city center is more important than the ability to fly wherever they want? Or are the fees at DAL that much lower?


When WN started service, it flew to three cities -- DAL, IAH, and SAT. It soon moved from IAH to HOU because, in the words of Herb Kelleher, "why drive 40 minutes to catch a 30 minute flight?"

The same is true for DFW vs. DAL. WN didn't want the bulk of its customers to (1) have to drive far to catch their flights, and (2) have to wait on the tarmac for 20 minutes to depart. This affects WN's notoriously fast turnarounds.

Today, some people say, "well WN flies to places like BWI, MHT, PVD, ISP, etc., people have to drive far to get to these airports, too." That's beside the point. WN has built up a fiercely loyal customer base in Dallas and throughout Texas. There are many, many people who would be upset if they had to drive all the way to DFW to catch their WN flight. Several people in my office work in Austin 2-3 days a week. I know for a fact that they would have a major problem with adding 30 minutes to their "commute" each day.
"Lose" is not spelled with two o's!!!!
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:45 am

- Why did WN never move to DFW? Is it their logic that proximity to city center is more important than the ability to fly wherever they want? Or are the fees at DAL that much lower?

At the time DAL was closer to the center of the metroplex, but rapid suburban growth has mitigated that advantage. Down-town Dallas isn't the center of the metroplex anymore.

The real advantage of DAL is taxi time, which ultimatly effects aircraft utilization. DFW is a massive airport, bigger than many cities which can lead to taxi times of 20-30 minutes. If you know anything about WN, you know that they want to have the airplane back in the air in that time.
 
ssides
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:50 am

At the time DAL was closer to the center of the metroplex, but rapid suburban growth has mitigated that advantage. Down-town Dallas isn't the center of the metroplex anymore.


That's true, but a larger number of people are closer to DAL than they are to DFW. If you're in Dallas County or most of Collin County, you're probably closer to DAL. That's a bigger chunk of people that are closer to DAL than DFW.
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PVD757
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 5:05 am

SSides, are there any more links to any related letters, or just the 3 you already posted?
 
OPNLguy
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 5:08 am

One good site for info is http://www.fightwright.org

Lots of links to various articles...
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Tom in NO
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 5:44 am

I commented in the "DFW Launches Wright Amendment Website" thread that Fegan's letter to other airport director's would not be looked upon very favorably by those managers, especially those pushing for new or additional service at their airports.

Nice to see Raul Regalado and Lou Miller putting the screws to Fegan by pushing for the abolition of the WA.

I can half see Houston staying neutral, but it is beyond me why directors at OAK and PHX would not get behind WN. Those two airports, in addition to LAX, SAN, LAS, FLL, MDW, and various airports in the northeast, stand to benefit the most from the WA's abolition.

Methinks this'll become a contentuous issue amongst the membership of the American Association of Airport Executives (of which I am a member), and the Airport's Council International (of which MSY is a member).

Tom at MSY
"The criminal ineptitude makes you furious"-Bruce Springsteen, after seeing firsthand the damage from Hurricane Katrina
 
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casinterest
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 5:53 am

As a new poster, and longtime observer, I think I will throw my thoughts behind this one.

In my opinion the Wright Amendment has outlived it's usefulness. DFW is a fully capable of surviving without it.

Free Market forces demand it.
The population can support it.
It is better for the customers.

What DFW and AA fear, is that AA will be at the mercy of Southwest on connecting flights if it is repealed. Suddenly the dominance and monopoly that AA holds on the South Mid American transcontinental connection would be lifted. DFW fears that with Southwest being able to offer transcon's through DAL, they would have to match DAL's gate cost to keep airlines interested in coming. AA fears it even more since Southwest could cut into some marketshare at strategically important destinations, and transcon connections.

What Southwest did when they announced their position on not moving to DFW and made known their thoughts that the Wright amendment be removed was twofold.

1. They made it public that they would not be adverse to having it removed, thus garnering the support of many cities that would like a more cost effective connection with the Dallas area
2. They put any other competitor on notice that if they move into DFW, they may wind up paying higher costs that at DAL and they run the risk that if the Wright amendment is repealed , they will be in a unadvantageous position to Southwest in terms of costs.



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goingboeing
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 6:06 am

With all the success of WN there constant whining about the wright admendment is really sad. They had there chance to move to DFW they did not want to. Live with your decision and quite your crying.

Actually, when Southwest was (finally) allowed to start flying, the weren't governed by the CAB like the other airlines were. But that was when the airlines were regulated. YOu couldn't fly from DFW to Omaha without getting CAB approval back then. But the Wright Amendment didn't come into being until 1978...which coincidently is the very same time that the airline industry was DEREGULATED....you know, to encourage competition. So airlines no longer had to request permission from the CAB to fly from DFW to Omaha...they could just start flying. Look at Braniff's reaction to deregulation....30 some odd new cities started virtually overnight. So...when Southwest begins to avial themselves of a deregulated environment, and starts serving New Orleans....all of there is a piece of legislation that is designed to REGULATE an airport in a DEREGULATED environment.

In fact...at the time that the Wright Amendment was enacted, Braniff and American were already too big to move operations back to DAL...and Delta was making it bigger. So the argument can be made that the amendment was never needed to "protect" DFW airport - unless the carriers at DFW were willing to cut way back on their growth plans, there simply wouldn't have been enough room to operate out of Love Field by 1978.
 
Tom in NO
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RE: Wright Amendment And DFW Area Lawmakers

Sat Feb 12, 2005 7:52 am

To follow up on my reply #11, and quote Fegan's words, and note a response:

Fegan:
"As I would never seek to alter how your airport is operated or managed, I respectfully ask that you resist any efforts to involve your airport in the repeal of the Wright Amendment"

Raul Regalado (BNA Director)'s response is priceless:
"To put it bluntly, the continuation of the Wright Amendment is not just a 'local matter', but negatively impacts other airports across the country, i.e., is unjustly discriminatory, is anticompetitive, and interferes with interstate commerce".

Those three comments (discriminatory, anticompetitive, and a restriction of interstate commerce) should be enough to legally blow the WA out of the water.

Tom atMSY
"The criminal ineptitude makes you furious"-Bruce Springsteen, after seeing firsthand the damage from Hurricane Katrina