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AA CEO to let airline employees pick tail logo

New CEO of American Airlines will let employees decide: eagle or horizontal bars on jet tails

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) -- The new CEO of American Airlines is having employees settle a dispute over the fleet's appearance by letting them pick a design for the planes' tails.

They'll get to choose between a stylized eagle that graced the tails for many years, and the bold red, white and blue horizontal bars that replaced the bird earlier this year.

Doug Parker, who became CEO last week with the closing of American's merger with US Airways, said Monday that voting will run through Jan. 2.

Just a year ago, American introduced the first major overhaul of the livery — airline talk for the paint job and logos — in more than four decades. New planes are a uniform light color with "American" superimposed in giant letters on the sides. Composite materials used on some planes that American has ordered made it impractical to keep the old polished-aluminum look that included red, white and blue stripes running the length of the fuselage.

Parker said in a message to employees that repainting the planes' bodies would be too costly, "So we aren't going to mess with the fuselage. That just leaves the tail."

Airline employees can be passionate about livery. Parker said some people asked him which tail design he'd like to see win. "The answer is I honestly do not care," he told employees. "I think both look fantastic."