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June 25, 2009
AOPA ePublishing staff
For more than a decade, AOPA has worked with the Metropolitan Airport Commission (MAC) to keep its reliever airport system intact. Numerous times, the association has stepped in to save Crystal Airport, one of the six relievers, and helped resolve lease-rate and land-use planning issues at each of the facilities. Now, the MAC has started a new initiative to promote the value its GA reliever airports through YouTube videos.
“We’re pleased that the MAC has started this important initiative to promote GA airports,” said Bill Dunn, AOPA vice president of local airport advocacy. “MAC officials clearly understand the value these GA airports bring to their regional airport system and the traffic they divert from Minneapolis-St. Paul International to manage congestion.”
The reliever airports encircle the Twin Cities, giving GA pilots flying from any direction easy access to the area. According to a MAC press release, the “reliever system is one of the largest in the nation with more than 400,000 takeoffs and landings annually, and a local economic impact of $255 million dollars.”
Each short YouTube video highlights specific features at Airlake, Anoka County-Blaine, Crystal, Flying Cloud, Lake Elmo, and St. Paul Downtown Holman Field.
Advocacy and Legislation
AOPA is looking to the Michigan Senate for “refinement” of proposals amended unfavorably in last-minute House action.
The General Aviation Pilot Protection Act would allow pilots to use the driver’s license medical standard for noncommercial VFR flights in aircraft weighing up to 6,000 pounds with no more than six seats, as long as they carry five or fewer passengers, fly below 14,000 feet msl, and fly no faster than 250 knots.
The Civil Aviation Medical Association is objecting to the FAA's proposed sleep apnea policy, warning that the evidence doesn't justify the approach.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.