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March 11, 2013   null   Volume 12 Issue 10

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State Advocacy Network News


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null FAA Releases 2013-2033 Aerospace Forecast

Last week the FAA released its 2013-2033 Aerospace Forecast. The forecast reviews the overall state of aviation including the total  numbers of flights, commercial airline passenger totals, aircraft fleet size, general aviation activity, and international travel and is used by the agency for workforce and resource planning and allocation.

According to the fact sheet accompanying the forecast, general aviation, in 2012, experienced a growth of 0.6%. The FAA predicts the following annual growth rates for the 2013-2033 period:

  • Overall general aviation fleet size will increase 0.5% per year
    • Fixed wing turbine fleet size (general aviation) will increase 2.5% per year
  • General aviation hours flown will increase 1.5% per year
    • Fixed wing turbine hours flown (general aviation) will increase 2.7% per year

Click here to download the full 2013-2033 Aerospace Forecast and Fact Sheet

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nullGeneral Aviation Awards Program Announces 2013 National Winners

The General Aviation Awards Program has announced the program’s 2013 national award winners:

  • William T. “Bill” Fifles of Honolulu, Hawaii – Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) of the Year
  • Bruce Allan Lundquist of Willis, Michigan – Avionics Technician (AVN Tech) of the Year
  • Dean Wesley Eichholz of Soldotna, Alaska – Certificated Flight Instructor (CFI) of the Year
  • Mark Edward Madden of Anchorage, Alaska – FAA Safety Team (FAASTeam) Representative of the Year

The GA Awards program is a cooperative effort between the FAA and more than a dozen industry partners, including NATA. The national awards winners are chosen by panels of volunteer judges comprised of previous national winners in each of the categories and will be honored at a ceremony at AirVenture in Oshkosh, WI later this year.

Click here for more information on the GA Awards Program.

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nullFAA Issues Update to Airport Winter Safety and Operations AC

Last week, the FAA issued a change notice to Advisory Circular (AC) 150/5200-30C, Airport Winter Safety and Operations.  According to the FAA, the change “Adds the requirement to identify Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting mutual aid access points(s) to include gate(s) operability [and] is in response to a National Transportation Safety Board safety recommendation.”

AC 150/5200, in general, provides guidance to assist airport operators in developing a snow and ice control plan, conducting and reporting runway friction surveys, and establishing snow removal and control procedures.

Click here for more information on AC 150/5200

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nullFederal Excise Tax Working Group Update

Last year, the IRS issued an advice memorandum that reached conclusions contrary to several longstanding commercial Federal Excise Tax (FET) revenue rulings. Prior rulings concluded that commercial FET does not apply on amounts paid by an aircraft owner to an aircraft management company in relation to that owner's Part 91 operations with his or her aircraft.

Such operations are subject to the noncommercial FET, which is imposed via a fuel tax.
An aircraft management company is providing taxable transportation if it has possession, command, and control of the aircraft being operated. Under the IRS Chief Counsel Advice memorandum (CCA 2012-10026) issued last year, the IRS reasons, incorrectly in our view, that since an owner typically does not have exclusive control over an aircraft management company's pilots that fly that owner's aircraft, the owner has therefore "relinquished possession, command, and control of the aircraft" to the aircraft management company. The IRS follows this reasoning to find that since possession, command, and control of the aircraft have been relinquished to the aircraft management company, the company must be providing taxable transportation to the owner and commercial FET therefore applies.

NATA believes that the IRS's conclusion in the CCA is faulty in that it fails to provide an example of an aircraft management arrangement that is not taxable. It also ignores prior rulings that determined an owner's payments for aircraft management activities relating to that owner's own activities are not subject to commercial FET.

In response to the IRS CCA, NATA has worked with a FET Working Group that includes the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), aircraft operators, consultants and other tax experts.

The goal of the Working Group is to assist the IRS in reexamining the conclusions of CCA 2012-10026 into a more sensible construct that will continue to ensure owner operations are viewed as noncommercial. In this vein, the Working Group has expressed industry's concerns over the new FET interpretation, outlined the rationale behind and mechanisms for the operation and management of Part 91 operations, and discussed with the IRS the potential adverse consequences this interpretation will have on the nature of Part 91 management agreements.

It is important to note that, technically, the CCA is not guidance that can be used or cited as precedent. However, IRS agents are well aware of the CCA and have nearly universally applied the CCA's conclusions in audits initiated over the last year. Significantly, appeals against several recent audits have been successful. The success of these recent appeals will provide the FET Working Group with new arguments to use in our upcoming negotiations with the IRS and are clear evidence that the IRS's interpretation should be revised.

The Working Group has met several times with the IRS and while we have presented the agency with workable and clear guidelines, the IRS does not yet appear to be moving off its new interpretation. And, we understand, the IRS continues with its audits. The FET Working Group will again urge the IRS to resolve this issue in a workable and timely manner. We will keep you updated as this develops.

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nullWeekly Regulatory Update

NATA compiles relevant updates from the FAA, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Homeland Security each day from the Federal Register. You can now find the latest notices, rules and proposed rules in a single source by clicking here.

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nullWashington Mayors Recognize Value of General Aviation

Twenty-one mayors from across Washington signed on to an ongoing petition to President Obama urging the Administration to recognize the value of general aviation to local towns and communities around the country. The mayors join more than 125 town and city officials across the nation who recognize general aviation’s importance in their states.

The Alliance for Aviation Across America spearheaded the effort in response to remarks made by President Obama about businesses that use general aviation because “it is extremely convenient and they can afford it.” Recently, the Administration proposed to alter business aircraft depreciation schedules as one of the “difficult choices” in reducing the federal deficit. The President is also considering a $100 per-flight user fee in his 2013 budget plan.

The petition notes the negative impacts that the President’s comments have on the general aviation community and businesses that depend on general aviation to thrive. To see the mayors who have signed the petition, or for ways to encourage your city official to sign, click here.

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nullNATA’s Aviation Business and Legislative Conference Addresses Issues For All General Aviation Businesses

NATA’s Aviation Business and Legislative Conference, taking place in Arlington, Virginia on April 22-24, is the most comprehensive conference available for general aviation businesses. It promises to be DC’s premier aviation business and policy event, covering topics important to airports, FBOs, and charter facilities.

Sessions will include disaster relief, health care, generational leadership, an overview of the business aviation industry in 2013, and more. The conference will feature a “Meet the Regulators” session with airports, maintenance, charter and flight training perspectives, as well as a TSA session and a legislative panel with some of the top congressional aides in Washington.

In addition to the sessions, the Aviation Business and Legislative Conference will host a Congressional Reception on Capitol Hill to allow NATA members in attendance to meet and discuss the issues their businesses face with their Members of Congress.

Rounding out this conference are NATA’s Industry Excellence Awards Dinner and Presentation, and the NATA Spring Committee Meetings.

To register for the Aviation Business and Legislative Conference, visit

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null2013 Air Charter Safety Symposium Exceeds Expectations

The Air Charter Safety Foundation (ACSF) just completed its sixth annual Air Charter Safety Symposium at the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Training Center in Ashburn, Virginia. The symposium provided two days of presentations and discussions on topics, such as, developing a positive safety culture, safety leadership, and starting an aviation safety action program (ASAP).

"We are extremely pleased with the response from symposium attendees," said ACSF President Bryan Burns. "The attendees were awed with the quality, depth and range of information presented that they could use in their daily operations. The best part was the interaction between the attendees and presenters. It was an extremely successful event."

The theme for this year's symposium was, "Safety is an Investment: It Pays Dividends," which drew more than 120 representatives from the on-demand air charter and fractional aircraft ownership community, as well as various aviation industry experts.

Click here to read the full press release.

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null2013 NATA Schedule of Events Available Online

The 2013 NATA Schedule of Events is now available as a pdf online. Click here to view the pdf.

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nullWorkers' Compensation Insurance Program Fact Of The Week™
Return To Work Program

Should you have a Return to Work program for your employees in case of injury?  Most will recommend that you do.  With your rates based on previous losses and time missed from work for your employees, every penny adds up.  By offering light-duty or modified-duty, you could substantially lower your overall loss ratio and, in turn, your annual premium.

Have your agent contact our Workers’ Compensation Insurance program administrator, Beacon Aviation Insurance Services, at for assistance with this or any of your other insurance needs.





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NATA is the National Air Transportation Association

Founded in 1940, NATA aggressively promotes safety and the success of aviation service businesses through its advocacy efforts before government, the media and the public as well as by providing valuable programs and forums to further its members' prosperity.

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Phone: 800-808-6282
Fax: 703-845-8176







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