General Aviation Groups Ask for Presidential TFR Relief

 - June 7, 2011, 10:10 AM

Six aviation associations–NBAA, AOPA, NATA, GAMA, EAA and HAI–in a joint letter asked TSA Administrator John Pistole for his agency to “work with industry to minimize the impact of temporary flight restrictions (TFR) created to support presidential travel on general aviation businesses.” The associations note that this is a continuing issue, “And we believe that we are now at a stage where practical and pragmatic steps can be identified to improve TFR design and implementation without in any way compromising the security of the President.” TFRs, one of the tools used to protect the President, directly result in loss of revenue at aviation businesses, including FBOs, corporate flight departments, air charter operators, maintenance facilities, flight schools and helicopter and heliport operators, the associations said. The groups cites $60,000-a-day revenue losses at a Chicago Midway Airport FBO when presidential TFRs are in effect, as well as daily losses exceeding $150,000 for helicopter air-tour operators in Hawaii and Las Vegas during similar visits there. The associations are asking that the agency develop procedures “that would allow aviation businesses and operators to continue operating near normal levels but address the security needs necessary to protect the President during travel.”