Continental/United Airlines merger

Houston Mayor Annise Parker today announced the formation of a panel to advise the City of Houston on the economic impact of the potential Continental/United Airlines merger. The panel will be led by Patrick Oxford, chairman of the Greater Houston Partnership and chairman of Bracewell & Giuliani, LLP. The other members are:

Mark White – former Texas Governor and Chairman, HISD Foundation
Daniel G. Bellow – president, Jones Lang LaSalle Americas, Inc.
Chip Carlisle – president, Wells Fargo – Texas Region
Anthony R. Chase – chairman and CEO, ChaseSource
Jason Few – president, Reliant Energy, Inc.
Irma Gonzalez – chairman, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and president and CEO, Employment Centers, Inc.
Renu Khator – chancellor, University of Houston
Bobby Tudor – chairman and CEO, Tudor Pickering Holt & Co., LLC

Mayor Parker has asked the panel to advise her on several specific economic issues, including:

• How will the potential merger impact employment and future economic growth in the Houston area?
• What will be the impact on air service to the greater Houston area?
• Will Houstonians continue to have access to competitive airfares and flights worldwide?
• How can the resources at the Houston Airport System best be utilized to support future economic development in support of a merged airline?
• How should the city be engaged in the various levels of administrative hearings related to the merger?

Houston stands ready to be supportive,” said Mayor Parker. “However, there is much at stake for the Houston area in this proposed merger. I want to make sure we have all the necessary information about the impact on our community.”

Other groups within and outside the city are evaluating the impact of the potential merger, including the Houston Airport System. Likewise, dialogue is continuing with area Congressional representatives, labor groups representing employees of Continental Airlines and other impacted citizens.

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