MEMBER ALERT: AOPA is closed today, Dec. 10, due to inclement weather and will reopen Dec. 11 at 8:30 a.m. Eastern.
July 1, 2011
President Barack Obama this week signed into law a bill that expands educational funding opportunities for active duty servicemen and women, for the first time including flight training in eligible programs. Both Houses of Congress passed the "Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Improvements Act of 2010" during the busy lame duck session of the 111th Congress. President Obama signed it into law on January 4, 2011.
"This bill is a big step forward for both active duty members of the armed services and for veterans," said Melissa K. Rudinger, senior vice president of government affairs for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. "For the first time, Congress has recognized and affirmed the value of non-degree educational programs, such as flight training."
The new law authorizes up to $10,000/academic year for flight training (many who are eligible will receive somewhat less than that).
But the work to make the program a reality is not yet complete.
"The bill President Obama signed is an authorization bill," said Lorraine Howerton, AOPA vice president of legislative affairs. "Authorization bills grant federal agencies permission to spend money, but don’t actually give them the money to spend. Congress has to pass an appropriation bill to do that.
"At a time when Congress is focused on cutting expenses and reducing the federal deficit, securing the appropriation may prove challenging," she noted. "As the appropriation process moves forward, AOPA will remind Congress of the strong support for the original bill and urge members to find a way to fund the program."
Pilot Training and Certification
Contemplating IFR flight scenarios for airports like Delta, Utah, is excellent review for any instrument pilot. That's because briefing for a flight into and out of Delta covers bases unlikely to be encountered on your next two-hour tour of your home field approaches.
What’s your heading?” Rare is the student pilot who hasn’t let distraction, or turbulence, spoil a slick stint of steady flying. Then you vow to do a better job next time of keeping track of the messages your instruments are displaying.
Helicopter training is generally very safe. So why do run-on takeoffs and landings feel so wrong?
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.