atrude777
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DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:53 am

A US appeals court has overturned a year-old order by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) that cost Republic Airways Holdings two coveted slot exemptions at Washington National airport.

The court's decision will likely force Sun Country Airlines to give the slots back to Republic.

The ruling on 6 January also reinforces a series of precedents allowing airlines to automatically take over slot exemptions by acquiring or merging with another carrier.


http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...exemptions-for-sun-country-366641/

If I understand this correctly, Sun Country will now be forced to give up their slots, and give them back to Republic who in turn will let Frontier use them again?

Also...poor journalism or who's 737's are these?

Frontier would continue service to Kansas City, but downgrade the aircraft from the former Midwest-owned Boeing 737 to an Embraer regional jet.

What does this mean for SY or other carriers who got slots through other means?

Alex
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Cubsrule
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:04 am

Quoting atrude777 (Thread starter):
Frontier would continue service to Kansas City, but downgrade the aircraft from the former Midwest-owned Boeing 737 to an Embraer regional jet.

Poor journalism or a typo - it was YX 717s on the route.
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LAXintl
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:35 am

Couple points.

1) DOT can appeal and pursue this further if it wishes.

2) More specifically what the court ruling did was to make the SY allocation invalid, and instruct the DOT to re-review the Republic allocation again. The exact language was "Accordingly, we grant Republic’s petition for review and vacate DOT’s order." The court found the DOT "departed from its precedent without adequate explanation"
= Its entirely possible the DOT will come up with the same conclusion, or atleast one that is more air tight, especially if they pursue an appeal.

3) Lastly, these are DOTs own rules. If the court found a crack in them which Republic was able to pursue, the DOT will undoubtedly issue new policy language to make it less ambiguous.
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JetBlueGuy2006
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:37 am

Thanks for the info LAX. It is interesting that since this was DOT policy itself that it was appealed to a court. It seems odd, although Republic must feel happy at least in the short term.

What is the probable outcome. I would hope in the end SY was able to keep the slots, as it seems like they are doing fairly well on the LAN-DCA route, although I believe they are going down for a short time during the winter schedule

Edited after seeing the 2nd reply

[Edited 2012-01-08 19:42:34]
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Cubsrule
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:51 am

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 2):
1) DOT can appeal and pursue this further if it wishes.

Unlikely. Why would the Supreme Court review it?

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 2):
Its entirely possible the DOT will come up with the same conclusion, or atleast one that is more air tight,

Much more likely, but other things being equal, it tends to be harder to win the second time around after the courts have reversed the agency once.
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777ER
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:58 am

Bad news for Sun Country. Once again a small airline looses to an airline with more money that can afford court action
 
atrude777
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:02 am

Quoting 777ER (Reply 5):
Bad news for Sun Country. Once again a small airline looses to an airline with more money that can afford court action

Well..it seems the consensus is that SY should never have gotten the slot in the first place.

RW should have been allowed to keep them after the take over of YX/F9, that's what the proceeding is about.

I believe, correct me if I am wrong, has nothing to do with who has more money to go to court.

Alex
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Cubsrule
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:09 am

Quoting 777ER (Reply 5):
Once again a small airline looses to an airline with more money that can afford court action

You'd prefer that DOT just be allowed to do whatever it wants with no accountability?
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LAXintl
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:42 am

Quoting atrude777 (Reply 6):
Well..it seems the consensus is that SY should never have gotten the slot in the first place.

I'm certainly not in that concensus.

SY had a pretty good bid. Its very nicely matched 3 of the 4 criterias of the slot access goals (listed below) while Lansing itself just prior also had received a SCASD grant to reestablish a DCA link.

o Community without existing nonstop DCA service
o Small Community
o Low fare competitive benefits
o Competition on a monopoly route


Their bid, and airport grant matched up quite cleverly imo.
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atrude777
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:53 am

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 8):

I'm certainly not in that concensus.

I should rephrase...

RW should never have lost the slots in the first place.

Yes under the definition you gave SY met it, but it seems DOT should never have forced RW to give up the slots as a result of the merger based on the article.

Alex
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N1120A
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:56 am

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 4):
Unlikely. Why would the Supreme Court review it?

The name of the actual court was not printed. Its entirely possible that a district court was acting as the appellate court of first instance from an administrative court.
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:11 am

Quoting 777ER (Reply 5):
Bad news for Sun Country.

Bad news for Sun Country, indeed, if it stands. But it was bad news for Frontier when the slots were taken away.

Especially since the DOT intended to take away even more slots (from Republic/Frontier) for similar reasons:

DOT Launches DCA Slot Proceeding (by LAXintl Aug 30 2010 in Civil Aviation)

LAXintl - OP: The DOT today has commenced slot proceeding to reallocate former 7 Midwest Airlines DCA slots.
Initially DOT is soliciting applications for two Vision-100 %u201Cwithin perimeter%u201D slot pairs currently used by Frontier on DCA-MCI services."


Perhaps aggravated by the DOT not recognizing at the time that Frontier is a "limited incumbent" which it does recognize now.

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simairlinenet
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 12:58 pm

Aside from the timing (2001), how is this situation different than when American's purchase of TWA did not allow them to take over DCA-LAX?
 
Cubsrule
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 1:31 pm

Quoting N1120A (Reply 10):
Its entirely possible that a district court was acting as the appellate court of first instance from an administrative court.

No, it was the D.C. Circuit. The case number is 11-1018, and the opinion was issued on Friday.
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sunking737
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 1:38 pm

What many of you don't understand is SY wanted to move its flights from IAD to DCA to offer lower fares out of MSP. This opened up an opportunity for them to do just that. SY already was serving LAN with winter flights to Sun destinations (MCO, LAS, CUN etc) I understand that DCA is slot restricted, but why does one or two airlines need to control so many??

Worse case SY may move its flights back to IAD, but I don't think SY will roll over and play dead on this one. It more then likely will get tied up in the courts for a few years. If not by SY, by DOT then.
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washingtonian
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:27 pm

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 13):

No, it was the D.C. Circuit. The case number is 11-1018, and the opinion was issued on Friday.

Yes. As per standard administrative procedure in DC. I'd say the chances of it getting SCOTUS review are about zero.
 
JetBlueGuy2006
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Tue Jan 10, 2012 9:40 pm

Ran across this artilce in our local paper. It was nice to hear that SY has been suprised by how successful the route has been and is committed to the route

http://www.lansingstatejournal.com/a...y=tab%7Ctopnews%7Ctext%7CFRONTPAGE
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Tue Jan 10, 2012 9:56 pm

Quoting simairlinenet (Reply 12):


Aside from the timing (2001), how is this situation different than when American's purchase of TWA did not allow them to take over DCA-LAX?

DCA beyond-perimeter slots may not be sold, only reallocated. Since AA bought TWA assets that authority went back to the DOT and was later awarded to AS. However, America West had LAS/PHX-DCA slots which they kept since they were the acquirer of US. Had US bought HP, those slots would also have been subject to reallocation.
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kingcavalier
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Tue Jan 10, 2012 10:34 pm

I feel bad for SY. It wasn't their fault, but it wasn't Republic's fault either. I feel worse for LAN.

The article says - "Sun Country has had 47,921 passengers on the Minneapolis-Lansing-Washington, D.C., route since starting service in April 2011." Those aren't bad numbers, but I wonder how many of those passengers originated at MSP vs. LAN. If most of the passengers were originating in MSP then the yields get trashed by making the aircraft stop in LAN. It means LAN isn't big enough to support the DCA flight on their own with such a big aircraft, and for SY, it's really about MSP and getting access to DCA.

Personally, I'd like to see F9 and SY work something out with some type of alliance/code share.
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knope2001
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Wed Jan 11, 2012 2:21 am

For the first six months of SY's DCA-LAN-MSP the averate DCA departure had:

30.8 Lansing-bound passengers
56.3 Minneapolis-bound passengers
43.0 empty seats

Load factor 66.9%
 
Cubsrule
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Wed Jan 11, 2012 12:29 pm

Quoting knope2001 (Reply 19):
For the first six months of SY's DCA-LAN-MSP the averate DCA departure had:

Seems like that might work on something smaller than a 73G at the right fare.
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sunking737
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:54 pm

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 20):
Quoting knope2001 (Reply 19):
For the first six months of SY's DCA-LAN-MSP the averate DCA departure had:

Seems like that might work on something smaller than a 73G at the right fare.

The 737-700 is the smallest plane you will see SY fly. Even that took awhile to get used to. The 737-800 was the smallest they had behind the 727 and DC-10.
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Cubsrule
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RE: DOT Order On DCA Slot Exemptions Overturned-SY/RW

Wed Jan 11, 2012 9:26 pm

Quoting sunking737 (Reply 21):
The 737-700 is the smallest plane you will see SY fly.

I know. I didn't say that it seemed like it would work on SY.
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