The FAA has issued a final policy statement that permits general aviation airports to enter into residential through-the-fence (RTTF) agreements with property owners or associations representing property owners. To gain access, the property owner is required to pay access charges; bear the cost of building and maintaining the infrastructure necessary to provide access to the airfield; maintain the property for residential, noncommercial use for the duration of the agreement; prohibit airport access from other adjacent or nearby properties; and prohibit any refueling on the property.
The FAA clarified that sponsors of commercial service airports are not permitted to enter into RTTF arrangements. However, the sponsors of GA airports may enter into such an arrangement if the airport sponsor complies with certain requirements contained in the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.
In late 2009, the FAA released draft guidance that stated there were no forms of acceptable RTTF agreement because they violated federal grant assurances signed by the airport owner in return for federal funds for airport development. Representative Sam Graves (R-Mo.), a co-chairman of the House GA caucus, included a provision in last year’s FAA reauthorization bill requiring the FAA to honor RTTF agreements.