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Fort Worth, Dallas Chambers Say American Airlines Takeover Would Damage Texas Economy

Texas Business reports:  FORT WORTH—The Fort Worth Chamber and Dallas Regional Chamber – the two largest chambers in the region, oppose the proposed takeover of American Airlines by U.S. Airways, stating it would damage the DFW economy.

The chambers both held full board meetings Thursday and Friday mornings on American Airlines.

The two chambers issued a joint statement through Fort Worth chamber chief executive Bill Thornton and Dallas chamber chief executive James C. Oberwetter:

“We are greatly concerned by the potential impact that American's union employees' support of U.S. Airways' intentions could have on both the bankruptcy proceedings and the local economy, and are opposed to any mergers prior to American exiting bankruptcy.  While it may seem to some that this is an option, it's actually a damaging distraction that will disrupt American's thoughtful process already in place to preserve the most jobs in Dallas/Fort Worth, and the state of Texas, both now and once American has exited bankruptcy.

“American Airlines' brand equity stands alone. Aviation is a legacy industry in our region, and American's headquarters in Fort Worth and presence at DFW Airport brings international recognition to North Texas. The company has provided jobs for generations of residents who live in communities all across the region.  In addition, American Airlines has benefited dozens of communities with charitable contributions.  A merger risks losing all that, and more.

“The best outlook for all American employees is for the airline to remain independent and headquartered in North Texas. We urge the creditors and unions working with American to not be distracted by the efforts of other carriers to disrupt the proceedings.  Allow the bankruptcy process to run its course.  American's management has the exclusive right to submit a plan of reorganization until late September.  Completing this essential step is in the best interests of American's employees, creditors, Fort Worth, Dallas and all the communities served by American Airlines.”