The Airline Reporting Corporation filed its opening submission with the Independent Arbitration Panel (IAP) in ARC's dispute with ASTA over the reporting board's annual administrative fees. ASTA is opposed to the fee hikes and has taken the issue to the IAP for resolution.
In a statement, ARC said it made changes in its fee program this year, including raising the fee for independent and home office locations to $395, and "rolling a number of miscellaneous matters that had been separately charged into the annual fee."
ARC's statement also described the benefits travel agencies receive from its accreditation and settlement systems, and the many enhancements, such as the interactive reporting system (IAR) and the Document Retrieval System that ARC has added over the years.
ARC said it feels that these are points that strongly support the fee hikes and at the same time refute the claims of ASTA that the benefits agents receive from ARC are "incidental" and "largely an illusion."
The airline agency asserted that it is fair to increase the percentage contributions made by agents, and that the overall costs when viewed in absolute terms or in comparison with other expenditures are fair and reasonable. (GD)