April 14, 2006
User fees for some ultimately mean user fees for everyone. That's one reason why AOPA opposes aviation user fees in the United States.
Canada has proven the point.
When the private corporation Nav Canada bought the country's air traffic control system in 1996, it assured general aviation that its only fee would be a fixed, annual fee.
Now Nav Canada has implemented daily use charges for general aviation aircraft at seven Canadian airports.
"The age of pay-as-you-go is upon us, indeed a very slippery slope that has played out elsewhere in the world," said Kevin Psutka, president and CEO of the Canadian Owners and Pilots Association (COPA). "COPA considers this a devastating precedent that will most likely be expanded over time to capture more airports and/or services."
And COPA expects that the airlines, which had pushed for this GA user fee increase, will be asking for more. Just as U.S. airlines are currently pushing for user fees on some segments of general aviation.
"We can't let the camel get his nose under the tent here in the United States," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "This is the perfect example of why any FAA proposal for fee-for-service would ultimately be bad news for general aviation. User fees would inevitably trickle down to the pilots of light general aviation aircraft.
"And this shows what happens when a private corporation runs air traffic control. Corporations are always looking for new ways to generate revenue - new ways to charge their customers.
"Air traffic control is not a commodity that can be supplied by the lowest bidder, nor charged on a per-use basis," Boyer continued. "It is about protecting public safety, in the air and on the ground. Everyone has a stake in that, and that makes air traffic control a government function that is rightfully paid for with taxes."
(For more information, see COPA's Web site.)
April 14, 2006
A touch of history, affordable flying, unique sightseeing, a good meal, and a community of pilots: Isn’t that what general aviation is all about?
Getting the job done on the local and national levels requires long-term planning, a hands-on approach, and keeping the effort moving, said Sean Collins, AOPA’s Eastern regional manager.
Deep in the dense, moss-draped, oak forest of Amelia Island is a luxurious plantation resort. Check out this Florida destination while you are in the Southeast for AOPA's St. Simons, Georgia, Fly-In on Nov. 8.
VOLUNTEER AT AN AOPA FLY-IN NEAR YOU!
SHARE YOUR PASSION. VOLUNTEER AT AN AOPA FLY-IN. CLICK TO LEARN MORE >>>
VOLUNTEER LOCALLY AT AOPA FLY-IN! CLICK TO LEARN MORE >>>
BE A PART OF THE FLY-IN VOLUNTEER CREW! CLICK TO LEARN MORE >>>