July 1, 2009
By Sarah Brown
Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) has introduced a resolution in the House to recognize the contributions of the general aviation industry to the United States.
Noting the many services GA provides—from aiding law enforcement to providing access to small communities—H.Res.508 also encourages GA activities.
“Over a million Americans work within the general aviation industry,” Fortenberry said. “From helping to save lives through the transport of blood supplies, vital transport organs, and other time-critical items to aiding in law enforcement through patrolling highways, apprehending suspects, monitoring national borders, and locating lost children, general aviation plays a vital role, and I am pleased to sponsor this resolution to recognize the general aviation industry for its contributions to our nation.”
“Congressman Fortenberry recognizes the value of general aviation to the United States, and this resolution helps educate his colleagues about its contributions to the nation’s economy and transportation infrastructure,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller. “Efforts like his make an important contribution by sharing with policymakers the importance of general aviation to all Americans.”
The resolution cites the GA industry’s $150 billion contribution to the U.S. economy, the 1.3 million jobs created by GA, and the vital services GA provides to people across the nation. GA connects small communities across the United States that are inaccessible by commercial aviation; helps save lives through transporting blood supplies and transplant organs; protects the environment by assisting with wildlife surveys and the mapping of wetlands; and helps law enforcement apprehend suspects and locate lost children, the resolution notes.
In short, GA serves America. It’s a message AOPA has been working to communicate to policymakers and the public through the GA Serves America Campaign; and as AOPA reaches out to help decision-makers and the public better understand GA’s critical role in the national economy in the daily lives of all Americans, support for GA has been growing in Congress.
AOPA told lawmakers that a tax-abatement bill introduced in Nevada would stimulate aviation business and make more services available to members.
New legislation in both houses of Congress would allow thousands of pilots to fly without a third class medical and offer new protections for GA pilots.
Two bills that would increase aviation fuel taxes and tap some proceeds for nonaviation purposes could place New Mexico in conflict with federal grant guarantees.
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