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If the deal is approved by Delta pilots, it is widely expected to act as a benchmark for contract negotiations at rivals United Airlines (UAL.O) and American Airlines (AAL.O). The Atlanta-based carrier's pilots have been working without a new contract for nearly three years after their old contract became amendable in December 2019, fueling frustration. In the draft agreement, Delta promises that pay rates of its pilots will exceed those at United and American by at least 1%. In a year of protests for the industry, pilots at all major U.S. carriers have been demanding higher wages and a better work-life balance. In its memo, Delta's pilot union said more than 25% of the value of the contract agreement is dedicated to quality-of-life related items.
[1/2] Delta Air Lines pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, protest outside Terminal 4 at JFK International airport in New York City, U.S., June 30, 2022. REUTERS/Shannon StapletonCHICAGO, Dec 2 (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines (DAL.N) has offered a 34% pay increase to its pilots over three years in a new contract, according to a draft agreement seen by Reuters. The pilots will get a raise of at least 18% raise on the date the contract is signed, another 5% after one year, 4% after two years and 4% after three years, it says. Delta pilots have been working without a new contract for nearly three years after their old contract became amendable in December 2019, fueling frustration. They voted overwhelmingly in October voted to authorize a strike if negotiators could not reach an agreement on the new contract.
WASHINGTON, Dec 2 (Reuters) - General Motors Co (GM.N) and LG Energy Solution Ltd (373220.KS) said Friday they are investing another $275 million in their Tennessee joint venture battery cell plant to increase production by more than 40%. It is one of at least four U.S. joint venture battery plants planned to supply GM electric vehicles as the largest U.S. automaker ramps up production. The first Ultium joint venture plant in Warren, Ohio began production in August. GM and LG Energy are also considering an Indiana site for a fourth U.S. battery plant expected to cost around $2.4 billion. They are also building a $2.6 billion battery cell plant in Lansing, Michigan, set to open in 2024.
[1/3] U.S. President Joe Biden addresses a joint news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., December 1, 2022. REUTERS/Jonathan ErnstWASHINGTON, Dec 2 (Reuters) - President Joe Biden signed legislation Friday to block a national U.S. railroad strike that could have devastated the American economy. But the Senate failed to approve a measure that would have provided paid sick days to railroad workers. Rail workers get zero paid sick days. Paid sick leave is a basic human right.
German government not planning blanket Huawei ban
  + stars: | 2022-12-02 | by ( ) www.reuters.com   time to read: +3 min
BERLIN, Dec 2 (Reuters) - Germany does not want to follow the United States in generally banning products made by Chinese telecoms equipment makers such as Huawei, but will continue making such decisions on a case-by-case basis, an Economy Ministry spokesperson said on Friday. A German Economy Ministry strategy paper seen by Reuters on Thursday detailed recommendations to increase the level of scrutiny on the use of components from certain states. The paper mentions legislation introduced in Germany in 2020 that set high hurdles for makers of telecommunications equipment for next-generation networks, such as Huawei. When asked whether it expected a tightening of rules or even a ban in Germany or the European Union, Huawei told Reuters on Friday it relied on constructive and facts-oriented dialogue. Representative Michael McCaul, top Republican on the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, said Germany was "jeopardizing its own national security and that of Europe's" in its decision on Huawei.
The announcement was welcomed by Auxin Solar, a small U.S. solar panel maker that requested the Commerce investigation in February. Producers including New East Solar, Hanwha Q CELLS, Jinko Solar (JKS.N) and Boviet Solar were found not to be dodging the tariffs, Commerce said. "The only good news here is that Commerce didn't target all imports from the subject countries," Abigail Ross Hopper, president of solar trade group the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), said in an emailed statement. Buyers of solar panels for both large utility projects and residential rooftops say new tariffs will worsen what is already a difficult market for accessing solar energy equipment. The mere threat of new tariffs on solar imports also contributed to a slowdown in project development this year, the industry has said.
The House also separately voted to require seven days of paid sick leave for rail workers, a measure the White House has not endorsed. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has not yet scheduled a vote on the rail measure and some senators, including Bernie Sanders, have demanded a separate vote on the sick leave issue as a condition of agreeing to fast-track consideration of the rail contract vote. Schumer said he wants to see paid sick leave included in the legislation. Railroads and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce oppose amending the contract deal that was struck in September largely on the recommendations of an emergency board appointed by Biden. But some labor leaders have criticized Biden for asking Congress to impose a contract that workers in four unions have rejected over its lack of paid sick leave.
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - A senior U.S. lawmaker wants details from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) about the safety of the cockpit alerting system for the Boeing 737 MAX -- an issue at the heart of a dispute over two new variants of the best selling airplane. Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell on Tuesday circulated a draft proposal that would extend the 737 MAX 7 and MAX 10 certification deadline and require retrofitting existing planes with safety enhancements, Reuters reported. After Dec. 27, all planes must have modern cockpit alerting systems to be certified by the FAA, which could put the two new MAX planes future in jeopardy. Cantwell's letter asked "to the extent FAA has identified safety deficiencies with 737 MAX’s flight crew alerting system, please describe FAA’s plans to immediately address these safety concerns." Boeing declined to comment but has said it is safer to have one common cockpit alerting system for all versions of the 737.
HAVANA/WASHINGTON, Dec 1 (Reuters) - Cuba´s Vice Foreign Minister Carlos Fernandez de Cossio on Thursday accused long-time rival the United States of doublespeak after the Biden administration proposed to scrap a plan to install a new undersea telecommunications cable to Cuba. Cuba has long accused the U.S. of doublespeak, saying a Cold War-era embargo imposed by the United States on Cuba has failed to upend Cuba´s government, and instead, has only caused suffering among the Cuban people. The U.S. government in recent years has been scrutinizing undersea cable connections especially involving China. The existing ARCOS-1 submarine cable system connects the United States with 14 countries in the Caribbean, Central America and South America and sought to expand to a landing station in Cojimar, Cuba. The system's operator argues it would "increase the means through which Cubans on the island can communicate with the United States and the rest of the world."
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday voted to approve a bill to block a potentially crippling railroad strike and to mandate paid sick time for rail workers. The House separately voted 221-207 to give seven days of paid sick leave to railroad employees, but that faces an uncertain fate in the Senate. Democrats and some Republicans have expressed outrage over the lack of paid short-term sick leave for railroad workers. "We know much more needs to be done for railroad workers," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said ahead of the votes. Asked if Biden supported the separate House measure to require sick leave, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that the president broadly supports paid sick leave for all Americans "but he does not support any bill or amendment that would delay getting this bill to his desk."
U.S. House backs legislation to block rail strike
  + stars: | 2022-11-30 | by ( ) www.reuters.com   time to read: 1 min
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - A majority of the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday backed a bill to block a potentially crippling rail strike, but the fate of a separate proposal by lawmakers to mandate paid sick time remains uncertain. With voting ongoing, more than 250 members of the House that with 432 current members had voted in favor of imposing a tentative contract deal reached in September on a dozen unions representing 115,000 workers after President Joe Biden warned of the catastrophic impact of a rail stoppage that could begin as early as Dec. 9. A separate vote is planned later Wednesday on whether to require seven days of paid sick leave. Reporting by David ShepardsonOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
U.S. House set to approve bill to block rail strike
  + stars: | 2022-11-30 | by ( David Shepardson | ) www.reuters.com   time to read: +3 min
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives is set to vote on Wednesday to approve a bill to block a potentially crippling rail strike, but the fate of a separate proposal by lawmakers to mandate paid sick time remains uncertain. The influential business lobby group said the sick leave vote "would impose an unworkable, one-sided modification to a labor agreement." There are no paid short-term sick days under the tentative deal after unions asked for 15 and railroads settled on one personal day. But some labor leaders have criticized Biden for asking Congress to impose a contract that workers in four unions have rejected over its lack of paid sick leave. Both Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh are set to speak to Senate Democrats on Thursday about the rail labor issue.
Pelosi said the House would vote separately on Wednesday on a proposal to give seven days of paid sick leave to railroad employees. There are no paid sick days under the tentative deal after unions asked for 15 and railroads settled on one personal day. "Guaranteeing 7 paid sick days to rail workers would cost the rail industry a grand total of $321 million a year – less than 2% of its profits," Sanders said. The railroads oppose giving their workers paid sick time because they would have to hire more staff. "I can’t in good conscience vote for a bill that doesn’t give rail workers the paid leave they deserve," Representative Jamaal Bowman, a Democrat, said on Twitter.
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - A key U.S. lawmaker is proposing an extension of a certification deadline for two new versions of Boeing's (BA.N) 737 MAX and requiring retrofitting existing planes, according to a document reviewed by Reuters. Boeing is seeking an extension from Congress of a December deadline imposing a new safety standard for modern cockpit alerts for the 737 MAX 7 and 737 MAX 10 variants after two fatal 737 MAX crashes killed 346 people in Indonesia and Ethiopia and led to the plane's 20-month grounding. Boeing would be required to bear the costs of the mandatory safety enhancements retrofit for MAX planes currently in service, according to the proposal. Faulty data from a single sensor that erroneously triggered a software function called MCAS to repeatedly activate played critical roles in the fatal 737 MAX crashes. Earlier this month, acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen said he does not expect the agency will certify the 737 MAX 7 before the December deadline.
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - The U.S Senate does not plan to take up President Joe Biden's nominee to head the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) until next year, a key lawmaker said. Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell, who heads the panel that overseas the FAA, told Reuters late on Tuesday she planned to hold a hearing for Denver International Airport Chief Executive Phil Washington to head the FAA after the new Congress convenes in January. Cantwell said she plans to meet next week with Washington, who was nominated in July but not yet had a hearing. The Democratic lawmaker said she believes the White House will stand by Washington and renominate him next year. Washington, a former CEO of the Los Angeles public transport system, previously told Bloomberg News "all the allegations are false."
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - U.S. lawmakers are holding intensive discussions about whether to extend a key certification deadline for two new versions of Boeing's (BA.N) best selling 737 MAX, lawmakers and aides said. The largest U.S. planemaker is seeking an extension from Congress of a December deadline imposing a new safety standard for modern cockpit alerts for the 737 MAX 7 and 737 MAX 10. "We do want to push for safety enhancements and we'll see what happens - some people just want a straight extension," Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell told Reuters late on Tuesday, saying there is no agreement yet. Reporting by David Shepardson Editing by Chris ReeseOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - More than a dozen U.S. air marshals plan to refuse deployment to the U.S.-Mexico border, according to a group representing them, a sign of challenges facing U.S. President Joe Biden's administration as it grapples with record migrant crossings. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) sought volunteers from the Federal Air Marshal Service to travel to the southwest border, but when fewer than 150 signed up in October, some were assigned, said Sonya LaBosco, executive director of the Air Marshal National Council. The air marshals are part of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a DHS subagency, and ride on U.S. airlines to guard against security threats. A lawyer for the air marshal group wrote in a Nov. 4 letter to the agency that the deployments are illegal because they involve duties outside the scope of the job. A DHS spokesperson defended the deployments, saying that marshals have had previous assignments to assist hurricane relief and that some were temporarily deployed to the border in 2019.
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - U.S. President Joe Biden plans to travel to Taiwanese chip manufacturer TSMC’s (TGLL.UL) Arizona facility on Dec. 6, the White House said. "The President will visit TSMC and discuss how his economic plan is leading to a manufacturing boom, rebuilding supply chains, and creating good-paying jobs in Arizona and across the country," the White House said. Reporting by David Shepardson; Writing by Alexandra AlperOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
WASHINGTON, Nov 30 (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday voted to approve a bill to block a potentially crippling rail strike, but the fate of a separate proposal by lawmakers to mandate paid sick time remains uncertain. A separate vote was ongoing on whether to give seven days of paid sick leave to railroad employees, which lawmakers said is also expected to pass the House but faces an uncertain fate in the Senate. "We know much more needs to be done for railroad workers," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said. The influential business lobby group said the sick leave vote "would impose an unworkable, one-sided modification to a labor agreement." Both Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh are set to speak to Senate Democrats on Thursday about the rail labor issue.
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - U.S. passenger railroad Amtrak said ridership jumped by more than 10 million riders in the year ending Sept. 30 and has nearly returned to pre-COVID-19 levels. Amtrak said ridership rose 89% over 2021 levels to 22.9 million riders -- up 10.8 million passengers over the prior year. Amtrak traffic on the busy Northeast Corridor connecting Boston and Washington more than doubled in the 12-month period to 9.2 million passengers. Amtrak reported an adjusted operating loss of $884.9 million, which was an 18.2% improvement over the 2021 budget year. Amtrak said the system's jump in passenger traffic is "bucking the trend of continued lower ridership seen on most commuter railroads and public transit systems."
U.S. passenger railroad Amtrak ridership jumps
  + stars: | 2022-11-29 | by ( ) www.reuters.com   time to read: 1 min
WASHINGTON, Nov 29 (Reuters) - U.S. passenger railroad Amtrak said ridership jumped sharply in the year ending Sept. 30 and has nearly returned to pre-COVID-19 levels. Amtrak said ridership was up 89% over 2021 levels to 22.9 million riders -- up 10.8 million passengers over the prior year. Overall ridership hit about 85% of pre-COVID levels Amtrak said, adding that it expects ridership and revenue to improve above 90% of pre-COVID levels by September 2023. Reporting by David Shepardson; editing by Jonathan OatisOur Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
WASHINGTON/LOS ANGELES, Nov 29 (Reuters) - The U.S. House of Representatives plans to vote Wednesday to block a potential a U.S. rail strike after President Joe Biden warned of the dire economic consequences of a rail disruption that could happen as early as Dec. 9. U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said lawmakers will vote Wednesday to impose a tentative contract deal struck in September. At a White House meeting Tuesday with congressional leaders, the Democratic president was asked if he was confident he could avert a rail strike, and responded, "I am confident." Labor unions have criticized the railroads’ sick leave and attendance policies and the lack of paid sick days for short-term illness. There are no paid sick days under the tentative deal.
"The risks to our nation’s economy and communities simply make a national rail strike unacceptable," says the letter to congressional leaders seen by Reuters. "Therefore, absent a voluntary agreement, we call on you to take immediate steps to prevent a national rail strike and the certain economic destruction that would follow." It warned a strike could halt passenger railroad Amtrak and commuter rail services that "would disrupt up to 7 million travelers a day." If they do not, workers could strike or railroads could lock out employees - unless Congress intervenes. But railroads would halt hazardous materials shipments at least four days ahead of a strike deadline.
WASHINGTON, Nov 28 (Reuters) - U.S. President Joe Biden on Monday called on Congress to intervene to avert a potential rail strike that could occur as early as Dec. 9, warning of the potential dire economic impact. Biden asked lawmakers to adopt the tentative deal announced in September "without any modifications or delay - to avert a potentially crippling national rail shutdown." "The risks to our nation’s economy and communities simply make a national rail strike unacceptable," says the letter to congressional leaders first reported by Reuters. "Therefore, absent a voluntary agreement, we call on you to take immediate steps to prevent a national rail strike and the certain economic destruction that would follow." If they do not, workers could strike or railroads could lock out employees - unless Congress intervenes.
Nov 24 (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co (F.N) is recalling 634,000 sport utility vehicles (SUVs) worldwide over fire risks from possible cracked fuel injectors and will urge owners to have their cars inspected, it said on Thursday. Vehicles repaired under the earlier recall will still need the new recall fix, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said. Ford said it has 54 total reports of 1.5 liter under-hood fires, including four with cracked fuel injectors. Ford said it is not telling owners to stop driving vehicles under this recall. The company projects a low failure rate for fuel injectors experiencing external leaks.
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