(CHICAGO) Wednesday, May 1, 2002 - United Airlines (NYSE: UAL) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jack Creighton today will meet with key members of Congress to underscore the support of United`s 85,000 employees for the “National Aviation Capacity Expansion Act of 2002,” which codifies into federal law an agreement on O`Hare International Airport modernization reached by Illinois Gov. George H. Ryan and Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley. The bill won passage, 19-4, in the Senate Commerce Committee on April 18.
“I am here on behalf of our employees and the 75,000,000 passengers we fly annually to urge the full Senate to pass this legislation,” said Creighton. “Clearly, the U.S. Congress is in a position to take historic action here by codifying this unprecedented agreement to modernize O`Hare and solve Chicago`s capacity crisis.”
Because O`Hare is the anchor of United`s global aviation network, the efficiency of the airport and the efficiency of its own network are inexorably linked. United has applauded Gov. Ryan and Mayor Daley for delivering a modernization plan that is rooted in two core principles: consumer benefits and economic benefits.
“By passing this bill, the U.S. Senate can play a vital role in reviving the unquestioned economic engine for the city, state and regional economies. The Ryan-Daley agreement will bring 200,000 new jobs to the region, increase O`Hare`s annual economic benefits by an estimated $16-$20 billion and create a world-class and highly-functioning all-weather airport that will inject critical new capacity into the national aviation system. The consumer and economic benefits of this agreement cannot be undervalued,” said Creighton.
In advance of last week`s Senate Commerce Committee vote, United employees flooded the office of Sen. Peter Fitzgerald (R-IL) with approximately 10,000 e-mails and faxes supporting O`Hare modernization and urging the Senator to reconsider his objections to the modernization plan.
“Our employees understand that our hub in Chicago is the heart and soul of our operation and, unlike Senator Fitzgerald, they understand that O`Hare modernization is necessary for our hub to grow and thrive,” said Creighton.
United Airlines offers more than 1,800 flights a day on a route network that spans the globe. News releases and other information about United Airlines can be found at the company`s website www.united.com.