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May 2, 2011     null     Volume 10 Issue 18
Topics in this Volume


nullNATA Day On The Hill/Industry Excellence Awards Dinner Held This Week

The association will conduct its 2011 NATA Day on the Hill, Quarterly Committee Meetings and Industry Excellence Awards Dinner later this week. On Wednesday, May 4, the association will conduct its quarterly committee meetings at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill. Agendas for these meetings may be reviewed below:

Later that evening, the association will conduct its annual meeting of members, election of officers and annual NATA Industry Excellence Awards Dinner.

Last week, the association announced its award winners, including Pat Epps of Epps Aviation as its William A. "Bill" Ong Memorial Award recipient and James C. Christiansen of Hawker Beechcraft Corporation as the NATA Distinguished Service Award winner.

More information on these events can be found by clicking here.

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nullMembers Of Congress Added As Co-Sponsors Of The Freedom From Government Competition Act

U.S. Representative John Duncan (R-TN) and U.S. Senator John Thune (R-SD) introduced the Freedom from Government Competition Act (and H.R. 1474 and S. 785, respectively) to reduce unfair government competition with the private sector, including small business. The legislation seeks to end government monopolies and benefit the taxpayer by subjecting commercial activities being performed by federal employees within government agencies to market competition. Not only do federal agencies duplicate services available from private business, but many also engage in unfair government competition with the private sector. Many aviation businesses have been affected by unfair government competition.

Currently, there are 13 co-sponsors in the U.S. House of Representatives for H.R. 1474, including Representatives John Duncan, Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Mike Coffman (R-CO), Sam Graves (R-MO), Ralph Hall (R-TX), Vicky Hartzler (R-MO), Randy Hultgren (R-IL), Steven LaTourette (R-OH), Donald Manzullo (R-IL), David McKinley (R-WV), Dennis Ross (R-FL), Pete Sessions (R-TX), Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA), and Don Young (R-AK). In the U.S. Senate, Senators John Thune, John Barrasso (R-WY), James Inhofe (R-OK), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), and Pat Roberts (R-KS) have co-signed S. 785.

It's imperative to have as many co-sponsors of the bill as possible in order for Congress to consider the legislation. NATA members are being asked to contact their Members of Congress to request they co-sponsor the Freedom from Government Competition Act through the legislative action center. Urge your Members of Congress to support the bill today!

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nullCapitol View Blog

NATA President and CEO James K. Coyne's latest blog focuses on putting the FAA's workforce where it belongs.

To read Coyne's blog, please click here.

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nullInside Washington Blog

NATA Vice President of Government and Industry Affairs Eric R. Byer's latest blog discusses how NATA's Day on the Hill this week allows members to address government competition against private business.

To read Byer's blog, please click here.

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nullFlight Training Bill Passes CA Senate Committee

Last week, Senate Bill 619 (SB 619) was passed by the California Senate Committee on Business, Professions and Economic Development on a unanimous vote. SB 619, which is supported by NATA, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association and others in the industry, would provide an exemption to certain flight training facilities and flight instructions from the rules issued by the California Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE). Under the current language in SB 619, the exemption would apply to facilities and flight instructors that:

  • Do not require the upfront payment of "tuition" or fees, and
  • Do not require students to enter into a contract of indebtedness

SB 619 would, however, still allow students to purchase "block time" in amounts less than $2,500 from their flight school. Final passage of SB 619 is still not certain, and NATA will be continuing its efforts to ensure that relief is passed by the legislature before the July 1, 2011 date on which the BPPE rules become effective for our industry.

NATA is currently engaged in a lobbying effort in Sacramento as well as ongoing grassroots efforts around the State of California. NATA has established a fund for its members and others in the industry to contribute towards some of the cost of this effort.

Click here to learn more about NATA's efforts in California.

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nullNATA Supports FAA Rulemaking Amendment

NATA, along with other key industry organizations, sent a letter of support for Section 826 of the recently passed the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act (H.R. 658), which would require the FAA to follow certain guidelines in the course of its rulemaking activities. This provision does not require the agency to take any specific action on any particular rulemaking and, with respect to FAA rulemaking, would simply incorporate into federal law the existing requirements of two currently existing Executive Orders of Presidents Clinton (E.O. 12866) and Obama (E.O. 13563). The provision also takes into account the basic fact that the U.S. aviation industry comprises a diverse group of very different business models by codifying FAA Administrator Babbitt's statement before an ALPA Safety Conference in August 2009 that "In rulemaking, not only does one size not fit all, but it's unsafe to think it can." NATA along with industry will continue to support the FAA rulemaking provision of section 826 of H.R. 658 and urge that it be included in any FAA Reauthorization bill conference report.

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nullNATA Joins Letter Of Support For FAA Contract Tower Program

NATA joined a letter of support to the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate Committees on Appropriations advocating for continued funding of the FAA's Contract Tower Program. As Congress begins work on legislation to fund the FAA in fiscal year 2012, NATA and other industry organizations feel it's important that the committee fund the regular FAA Contract Tower Program at $121.8 million, as well as continue funding for the contract tower cost-sharing program at $10 million.

Since 1982, the FAA Contract Tower Program has provided cost-effective and essential air traffic safety services. Currently, 246 smaller airports in 46 states participate in the program and together these 246 towers handle approximately 27 percent of all control tower aircraft operations in the U.S. and account for just nine percent of FAA's overall budget allotted for air traffic control (ATC) tower operations. Most importantly, the safety and efficiency record of the FAA Contract Tower Program has been validated numerous times by the U.S. Department of Transportation Inspector General and FAA safety audits, as well as by the National Transportation Safety Board.

Federal contract towers operate together with FAA-staffed facilities throughout the country as part of a unified national air traffic control system. NATA will continue to advocate for full funding of the Contract Tower Program to permit the continuation of this important FAA safety program.

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nullNew FAA Associate Administrator For Airports Named

The FAA announced last week that Christa Fornarotto has been named the FAA's associate administrator for airports. Fornarotto previously served as the deputy assistant secretary for aviation and international affairs at the U.S. Department of Transportation. According to the FAA webpage, in this role she served "as the principal advisor to the Secretary on a broad portfolio of responsibilities covering domestic and international aviation, international trade, and other international cooperation and facilitation issues."

In her role as associate administrator for airports, Fornarotto will "oversee a $3.5 billion annual Federal airport grants program and passenger facility charge collections totaling $2 billion. She will also manage programs for national airport planning and development including safety standards, design and engineering, certification, environmental processing, and financing."

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nullLos Angeles City Council Votes To Abolish Flight Training At Santa Monica Airport

Although it has no power or authority over Santa Monica airport, the Los Angeles City Council voted last week to support efforts to close the six flight schools located at Santa Monica Airport (SMO). The council approved a resolution introduced by Councilman Bill Rosendahl that would support federal legislation to close the six flight schools and change the departure procedures from the airport. In an interview last week with the Venice Patch, Rosendahl explained his views on the airport, saying. "My long-range objective is that the airport needs to be shut down."

Despite the political posturing from the Los Angeles City Council, the FAA remains firm in its commitment to keep the airport, which has accepted federal funding for development, open. "Generally speaking, the operator of an airport that has accepted federal airport improvement grants could be in violation of its federal grant agreements if it tried to evict a certain type of tenant without just cause," FAA spokesman Ian Gregor told a local news Web site.

NATA will continue to monitor the issue and work with the FAA to ensure that the flight schools and other businesses located at Santa Monica are not shut down due to political pressure.

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nullGeneral Aviation Avgas Coalition Comments On Proposed Lead NAAQS Review

This week, the Industry Avgas Coalition, of which NATA is a member, asked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to delay reviewing the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for lead until the data from monitoring conducted in conjunction with the previous review is available."Because implementation of the 2008 lead NAAQS could result in significant reductions in lead emissions, revising the lead NAAQS is premature until the impact of those changes can be realized, measured, and considered in the next NAAQS review," the coalition stated in its comments.

The NAAQS for lead was reviewed and made substantially more stringent in 2008. As part of that process, and subsequent actions in 2010, air quality monitoring for lead is now being conducted at airports and other areas around the country in an attempt to understand better the effect general aviation aircraft have on airborne lead levels. The EPA has proposed, in a Draft Integrated Review Plan for the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Lead, undertaking a new review including a Science Assessment that would begin this year and conclude in June 2012. The coalition's issues with this draft review plan involve the fact that the data from current, soon to commence airborne lead monitoring, is not expected to be available until at least 2013. Because the data from monitoring will not be available for review, the coalition has asked the EPA to delay or extend revising the NAAQS for lead at this time.

Click here to read the General Aviation Avgas Coalitions' full comments.

Click here to read EPA's Draft Integrated Review Plan for the NAAQS for lead.

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nullSign-Up To Receive NATA's Weekly Political Update

NATA offers its members a political update on specific items that the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate and the White House are working on each week. This weekly update provides detailed information on hearings, legislation that was introduced or debated in committee, and any issue that NATA is following within Congress or the White House. The update's purpose is to provide members a more comprehensive view of the legislative matters on which the association is working. The Weekly Political Update is sent out via email only to NATA members who request to receive it. To view past weekly updates, please click here. If you wish to receive these updates, please click here.

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nullLine Service Supervisor Training Seminar

Only LSST In Northeast In 2011

NATA's Line Service Supervisor Training Seminar will once again take place at the New England Air Museum in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, on May 24-25. This seminar, specifically designed for Line Service Supervisors, provides the training you need to become more proficient in strategic planning, supervising staff, motivating others, communicating and coaching a team. This high-impact, high-energy seminar includes guided group debates, role playing, interactive games and various case studies designed to take you to a new level of leadership. You will also take part in self-assessments to explore your strengths and weaknesses and their effect on your management style.

Don't miss the chance to attend the LSST in Windsor Locks. Click here for more details and a link to register.

Visit for information on future NATA events.

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nullHave Part 135 Questions? NATA's Air Charter Summit Has Answers!

NATA will host an Open Forum with staff members from the FAA Part 135 Branch at its Air Charter Summit held June 6-8, 2011, in Chantilly, Virginia, at the Marriott Westfields.

These FAA representatives are directly responsible for the management of Part 135 issues within the FAA. They will discuss current projects that will impact your operations, take your questions and provide you with the information you need.

For more information and to register for the Air Charter Summit, click here, or call (800) 808-6282.

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nullNATA Co-Sponsoring Northeast Safety Symposium

NATA, along with the National Business Aviation Association, Helicopter Association International, United States Aircraft Insurance Group (USAIG), TAC Air and other industry groups, is sponsoring the Northeast Safety Symposium to be held in Windsor Locks, Connecticut on May 19. The symposium, which will be held at TAC Air's facility at Bradley International Airport (BDL), will focus on:

  • Wildlife strike avoidance and wildlife mitigation
  • FBO and ramp safety
  • Mission safety and aircraft interdiction

Presentations will be made by representatives from the US Department of Agriculture, USAIG and other industry experts. The event is free of charge and includes a continental breakfast and sandwich lunch. To register, please contact Dean Saucier at no later than May 6, 2011.

Click here to view the Northeast Safety Symposium flyer.

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nullFact Of The Week - NextGen News

We have all heard about the benefits of NextGen implementation for our industry and most of us are even familiar with some of the Technology. However, NextGen is more than one or two technological implementations. Rather, according to the FAA, NextGen is "a comprehensive overhaul of our National Airspace System." The FAA has created a webpage that provides a wealth of information regarding NextGen, including videos, graphics of NextGen operations and a library of documents. This site is a great resource for anyone wanting to learn more about the future of our national airspace system.

Click here to visit FAA's NextGen Webpage.

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    Upcoming Events

05/04/2011 - Washington DC
2011 Day On The Hill and Committee Meetings

05/24/2011 - Windsor Locks, CT
Line Service Supervisor Training

05/26/2011 - Windsor Locks, CT
OSHA Safety and Health Training

06/06/2011 - Dulles, VA
2011 Air Charter Summit

08/23/2011 - Ft. Lauderdale, FL
2011 Commercial Operators Tax Seminar

10/09/2011 - Las Vegas, NV
2011 Fall Committee Meetings

11/07/2011 - Atlanta, GA
Line Service Supervisor Training

11/08/2011 - Atlanta, GA
FBO Success Seminar

03/05/2012 - Las Vegas, NV
2012 Spring Training

NATA E-Learn Webinars

Commercial Operators Tax Seminar Preview Webinar - 06/22/2011

Click here to view archived webinar recording

IC Check

RA Check

President's Page - Your source for blogs, videos and more...

Safety 1st

Hear what others have to say about Safety 1st Professional Line Service Training

Aviation Business Journal

Host A Congressional Tour

The Pilot's Toolkit

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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Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 800-808-6282
Fax: 703-845-8176

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