The fiscal year 2007 federal budget
submitted by the Bush administration on Monday boosts the security
fees paid by passengers on commercial airline flights from $2.50 to
$5 for all flights. The hike would increase security funding from
such fees to $3.3 billion, a $1.3 billion jump. The new fee will
have opposition: Congress rejected a similar increase last year,
and the airline industry has fought such measures in the past.
Last week, UAL Corp., parent of United
Airlines, emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. "We have
achieved a great deal in our restructuring to reposition this
company and build upon our assets," said Glenn Tildon, United's
chairman, CEO and president. "We are in a very competitive
industry, and we take nothing for granted." During its three-year
stint in bankruptcy, United reduced its annual costs by about $7
billion, much of it in labor concessions and reductions in
workforce. The carrier also eliminated unprofitable services and
changed some operations and aircraft.
U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert
Faris recently accepted a motion by Aloha Airlines to modify its
reorganization plan. The airline, now expected to leave bankruptcy
protection in mid-February, filed for protection from its creditors
in December 2004.