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Corporate deal could cut Mather flights

By: Roger Phelps The Telegraph
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Number of flights to Mather Airport could drop under a decision by the parent company of cargo carrier DHL Express to ship on United Parcel Service planes. The outcome of a May 28 decision by the parent company is still up in the air, as officials from the company and from the Sacramento County Airport System quickly noted today. However, in a corporate "restructuring," DHL parent Deutsche Post World Net announced it aims to save $1 billion annually by having "DHL … work with UPS for North American airlift." "Deutsche Post World Net, the world’s leading transport and logistics company, (plans) to restructure its DHL U.S. Express business by working with UPS for airlift capacity and reducing costs in its ground infrastructure," the company announced. "Under the plan, DHL and UPS have agreed to develop a contract whereby UPS will provide air uplift for DHL Express U.S. domestic and international shipments within North America. In addition, DHL will align its U.S. Express infrastructure to existing shipment volumes by redesigning its ground line-haul network to better match capacity with customer requirements." The German corporation alluded to a need to "remove excess capacity in" DHL flights, and announced it will "reduce costs in ground infrastructure." The decision came despite the fact that an expansion for DHL is a component in a draft Mather Airport Master Plan. A lease amendment is approved for DHL to add 35,000 square feet for new storage areas for ground support equipment and expanded parking for employees and for big-rig trucks. "The deal between DHL and UPS is still preliminary, and the details for individual airports have not yet been worked out," said Karen Doron, spokeswoman for the Sacramento County Airport System. It is too early to know how the final results of the deal will affect air traffic at Mather Airport. We will continue to monitor the situation." In an e-mail to the Telegraph, Deutsche Post World Net spokesperson Robert Mintz said, "The extent of any impact on our air facilities would not be known until a contract with UPS is finalized." Folsom anti-air-noise activist Glen Otey said he couldn't make predictions for Mather, either, although he's familiar with the decision by the DHL parent company. "I don't have any idea what this means with regard to Mather, (but) there will be a huge impact on Wilmington, Oh., where the privately-owned DHL/Airborne main hub and maintenance facility is located," Otey said. "I understand that some 7,000 jobs will be lost if this becomes reality." The Telegraph’s Roger Phelps can be reached at rogerp@goldcountrymedia.com, or post a comment at folsomtelegraph.com