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ASC Monthly Update
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May 31, 2011     null     Volume 10 Issue 5
Topics in this Issue:





 nullAirline Services Council Meets; Discussion Of Ground Handling Entities Becoming Regulated Hot Topic

The NATA Airline Services Council (ASC) met on May 16-17, 2011, in Arlington, Virginia, to discuss a wide array of topics affecting the ground handling industry. Among the topics addressed during the meeting was the question of whether ground handling companies should become regulated parties under the Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration. Members asked that a meeting with all affected entities, including non-NATA ASC members, be held this summer to focus on this issue specifically.

The association has tentatively slated this meeting for July 28-29, 2011, near Washington Dulles International Airport. Additional information on this meeting will be sent to all ASC members within the next week.

Minutes from the May 16-17, 2011 meeting, along with all other information on the NATA ASC, can be found at:

For more details, please contact Eric Byer on the NATA staff.

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 nullPassage Of FAA Reauthorization Remains Uncertain

On May 24, the U.S. Senate approved a short-term extension that will give lawmakers until June 30 to complete action on a long-term Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization bill. The extension will allow FAA programs to continue while conference negotiations proceed on a final version of the legislation. The U.S. House of Representatives approved their bill, H.R. 658: FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2011, on April 1, 2011, and the Senate passed their bill, S. 223: FAA Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act, on February 17, 2011. The extension now awaits President Obama’s signature. When signed into law, it will mark the 19th extension of this law since 2007.

House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman John Mica (R-FL) has cast doubt on Congress's ability to move long-term funding legislation for the FAA. Chairman Mica stated that passage of the bill will be harder to achieve because the new Representatives have “little interest in providing more funds for the FAA.” But leadership in both sides of Congress have stated that they are willing to do whatever it takes to complete a final FAA bill without the need for a further extension.

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 nullUrge Your Members Of Congress To Co-Sponsor 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 (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 taxpayers by subjecting commercial activities being performed by federal employees within government agencies to market competition. Not only do federal agencies duplicate private business, many also engage in unfair government competition with the private sector. Many aviation businesses have been affected by unfair government competition. 

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 NATA’s legislative action center. Urge your Members of Congress to support the bill today!

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 nullNATA Welcomes Selection Of Thune As Ranking Member On Senate Subcommittee On Aviation Operations, Safety And Security

Recently, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, announced new minority subcommittee ranking member assignments for the 112th Congress. Included in this announcement was the selection of Senator John Thune (R-SD) as the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety and Security.

“Senator Thune has long been a supporter of the general aviation industry,” stated NATA President James K. Coyne. “Starting during his time as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, NATA has worked closely with the Senator on a variety of issues affecting our membership and the industry at-large.”

Recently, Senator Thune introduced S. 785, the Freedom from Government Competition Act, to reduce unfair government competition with the private sector, including small businesses. NATA members have continuously experienced government competition in the form of airport operators competing with private business. 

“Congress must recognize the right of private businesses to have the first option in providing services at airports, and should ensure that airport authorities seeking to provide these same services are not granted an unfair advantage due to their government status,” stated Coyne.  

“NATA congratulates Senator Thune on his selection as Ranking Member and looks forward to continuing its long-standing relationship with the Senator in addressing issues important to America’s aviation businesses,” concluded Coyne.

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 nullHouse Bill Seeks To Eliminate Redundancies In Security Credentials

On Thursday, May 12, the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security Subcommittee on Transportation Security passed H.R. 1690: Modernizing of Documentation and Elimination of Redundant Identification and Security Credentials Act (or the MODERN Security Credentials Act). Introduced by Subcommittee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-AL), the bill attempts to consolidate security threat assessment processes and costs or fees for transportation workers as well as reduce redundancies and streamline pertinent regulations. The bill also provides the chance for industry and government stakeholders to participate in a task force to offer recommendations for further modernizing the threat assessment process.

“This is an important piece of legislation that would eliminate the redundant background checks for transportation workers and would require the TSA to work with the appropriate stakeholders as it looks to modernize its credentialing programs,” stated Chairman Rogers. “I believe the industry should be listening to different stakeholders, reviewing their input, and conducting a full analysis of potential fees or costs associated with its plans which seem to deviate from the goal of eliminating redundancies, threat assessments and other processes.”

The amended bill will soon go to the full committee for consideration.

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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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 nullHost A Congressional Tour Today

Members of the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives spend a lot of time in Washington, but they also spend valuable time in their states and districts during scheduled congressional work periods and recess. Members of Congress take these opportunities to visit with constituents, making this the perfect time for NATA members to invite their Senators and Representatives to tour their facilities.

In 2010, NATA and the general aviation community worked tirelessly on numerous provisions negatively affecting general aviation. In 2011, we must remain vigilant and work together to educate the public and especially Members of Congress and their staff on the important role general aviation plays, including its economic value to our country. We will likely face a number of legislative hurdles this year, which is another reason to reach out to your elected officials and let them know how these issues affect YOU, their constituent. The inevitable passage of FAA Reauthorization and aviation security measures continue to be the most pressing legislative hurdles so far this year.

A tour of your facility is a valuable way to inform key congressional leaders on the principal issues confronting our national air transportation system while allowing you to address other issues affecting your business. This one-on-one interaction will give Members of Congress and their staff a better understanding of the value of America’s aviation businesses and airline services companies. In addition, NATA members can introduce their business to new and prospective Members of Congress, and forge stronger relationships with existing Members. Host a tour today!

To learn more about how to host a congressional tour, please click here.

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nullNATA Comments On Proposed Airport Safety Training Rules

Recently, NATA submitted comments on proposed safety training rules for airports certificated under 14 CFR Part 139 to the FAA. The proposed rules would require certificated airports to establish a safety training program for all individuals with unescorted access to the airports’ non-movement area. The FAA defines the non-movement area as “the area, other than that described as the movement area, used for the loading, unloading, parking, and movement of aircraft on the airside of the airport (including ramps, apron areas, and on airport fuel farms). The proposed rules would require training on the following topics:

  • Airport familiarization, including airport marking, signs, and lighting
  • Procedures for access to, and operation in, the non-movement area
  • Duties required under the Airport Certification Manual and the requirements of Part 139

In its comments, NATA expressed support for the FAA’s efforts to increase airport safety and provided suggestions for several improvements that would reduce the impact and increase the efficiency of the rule. NATA specifically requested that the FAA provide additional clarification on exemptions to ensure that certificated airmen, such as pilots and mechanics, would not need to receive individual training at each airport they visit in order to access their aircraft without escort.

NATA also suggested that the FAA allow airports to accept the training tenant businesses, such as FBOs, provide to their own employees, as long as that training meets the requirements of the rules. The association pointed out that allowing airports to accept the training, such as NATA’s Safety 1st PLST, provided by tenants would reduce duplicative training and the overall economic impact of the rule.

Click here to read the proposed Part 139 safety training rule.

Click here to read NATA’s comments.

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 nullNATA Comments On Proposed Airport Safety Training Rules

The FAA announced recently 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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nullAviation Business Journal Q2 Issue Now Available

The first quarter Aviation Business Journal is in the mail and is also now available at or by clicking here.

In This Issue:

  • Member Profile: Nantucket Memorial Airport
  • A Workers Compensation Controversy
  • Swift Justice: DOT Enforcement
  • Benefits of Airport Minimum Standards
  • And much more…

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 nullGet The Updated General Aviation Facts In NATA's Downloadable Reference Book

NATA has updated its popular fact book titled General Aviation in the United States. This publication was produced by the association for its members, the media, government, and the general public as a tool to help illustrate general aviation's importance to the U.S. transportation system and economy.

General Aviation in the United States provides an in-depth review of the NATA membership segments as well as other important components of the general aviation and airline services industry. This handy reference also contains information on a number of U.S. government agencies that affect the day-to-day operation of aviation businesses, and features several charts containing vital general aviation and business aviation statistics on fuel consumption, fractional ownership companies, active pilots, airports, and much more.
"NATA's fact book is one of the many helpful resources available to aid our members in educating community and government leaders about the value of our industry as a critical component to the American economy," NATA President James K. Coyne stated.

Click here to download your free copy of General Aviation in the United States now.

Members who have questions regarding this publication may contact Linda Pylant or Shannon Chambers.

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null2011 NATA Airline Services Council Brochure And Logo Now Available For Member Use

NATA recently updated and published its NATA Airline Services Council brochure and member logo. The brochure provides information on the latest activities that the council is undertaking, including issues, meeting schedule and member listing.

Members interested in receiving professionally printed hard copies of this brochure may contact Eric Byer on the NATA staff.

NATA has also created a new NATA Airline Services Council logo that members can use on company stationery, publications and their Web site. The association has provided members with two types of logos that can be used as appropriate. Members wishing to secure the new logo may do so by contacting Eric Byer.

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