General aviation interests are hailing the growth of the House General Aviation Caucus, which has reached a record total of 200 members of the House of Representatives, making it one of the largest and most active caucuses in Washington, D.C. Formed in 2009, the House GA Caucus–and its companion GA Caucus in the Senate–serves as an informal group of lawmakers, assembled to promote the role the industry plays in local communities and the national economy. Both caucuses work to inform debates about policies affecting the general aviation community.
Regulations and Government » Government
News about governmental decisions affecting aviation and aerospace.
The European Business Aviation Association has protested proposed new European Commission guidelines restricting state aid for airports. The rules would seek to phase out all public support for airports over a 10-year period and would introduce a sliding scale that limits permitted aid to airports with fewer than five million passengers per year and bans it for facilities with more than that throughput.
For a time in the 1970s and 1980s, Wisconsin Sen. William Proxmire gave out his Golden Fleece Awards. But they had nothing to do with Jason and Argonauts.
Airshows in the U.S., already reeling from widespread cancellations and significantly diminished attendance following the withdrawal of U.S. military demonstration teams, are now facing a new financial hurdle: user fees from the FAA.
The Pentagon blamed the withdrawal of its popular jet demonstration teams, the Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds, on cutbacks attributable to automatic federal budget sequestration. The Army also has withdrawn its Golden Knights parachute team.
Industry stakeholders should take a “careful approach” in recommending funding and other structural reforms to the U.S. aviation system, NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen told attendees at a NextGen symposium on Thursday in Washington, D.C. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association and Air Line Pilots Association International sponsored the event.
The FAA issued a final rule today that prohibits jets with an mtow of 75,000 pounds or less from operating in the contiguous U.S. after Dec. 31, 2015, unless they meet Stage 3 noise levels. To take effect on September 3, the rule could affect up to 599 civil jets, though any of these aircraft that are hushkitted or otherwise modified to meet Stage 3 standards will be permitted to operate in the U.S. in 2016 and beyond.
Select executives inside the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration are pushing hard to impose user and special fees on general aviation as part of a strategy to bridge the gap between the agency’s expenditures and revenues from its traditional fees and taxes. This includes charging $1- to $2 million for air traffic control and other services at airshows. However, it appears the FAA could reap billions of dollars in cost savings simply by implementing better management and business practices.
The FAA’s NextGen Air Transportation System initiative is progressing, according to the agency’s recently issued NextGen implementation plan report. While the report focuses on improvements to airspace and navigation capabilities, the implementation plan, and especially appendix A, provides a detailed summary of technologies already implemented or planned as part of NextGen, a useful guide for those wanting to learn about ADS-B and other systems.
Aviation alphabet groups praised today’s U.S. Senate confirmation of Anthony Foxx as the new Secretary of the Department of Transportation. He is the former mayor of Charlotte, N.C.“Now, as he leads the U.S. transportation system, we hope Foxx will adopt policies that encourage the success and growth of general aviation nationwide, allowing the industry to add to its $150 billion annual economic impact and 1.2 million jobs,” said GAMA president and CEO Pete Bunce. “We look forward to working with him in his new role.”
The FAA issued a 42-page “policy clarification” regarding the registration of aircraft to U.S. citizen trustees in situations involving non-U.S. citizen trustors and beneficiaries. Citing concerns that noncitizen trusts (NCTs) jeopardized its oversight authority over N-registered aircraft, the agency issued a moratorium on the use of NCTs in May 2010.