Capt. Rice voices ALPA pilots’ concerns about the skyrocketing cost of fuel to journalists at a Capitol Hill news conference. Listening to his remarks are (L-R) Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Bart Stupak (D-MI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Rep. Bill Nelson (D-FL), Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-VT), and John Meehan ATA.

ALPA Takes Pilots’ Call to Stabilize Fuel to Capitol Hill

Capt. Paul Rice, ALPA’s first vice president, took ALPA members’ message to stabilize the price of fuel to Capitol Hill on June 26. He urged the country’s government leaders to swiftly pursue a national energy policy and put an end to the energy market speculation that is driving up the cost of oil.

Capt. Rice voiced ALPA’s intense concern about skyrocketing fuel costs at a news conference held by Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI) in support of their bills, S. 3185 and H.R. 6330, the Prevent Unfair Manipulation of Prices Act of 2008 (PUMP Act). Capt. Rice personally relayed ALPA’s message to members of both houses of Congress who attended, including Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-VT), Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).

“Airline pilots have invested enormously in our industry—no other employee group has given more in the years following 9/11 to try to save it,” said Rice. “Incredibly, these concessions have been wiped out by this rapid and irrational run-up in fuel costs.”

Both the House and Senate bills are designed to close loopholes that allow rampant energy commodity speculation, which many experts believe are responsible for the unprecedented run-up of oil prices.

“To truly solve the immediate crisis and stabilize the nation’s economy and energy markets into the future, Congress and the president must create a commonsense national energy policy,” continued Rice. “ALPA stands ready to help create such a policy.”

“One essential element of a national energy policy must be to ensure a fair, transparent, and balanced energy commodities market,” Rice explained. “This legislation does just that. It will help create a platform of stability to help the U.S. airline industry to start regaining its financial footing.”