November 23, 2010
By Dan Namowitz
AOPA has requested an additional 60 days to study and comment on a proposed revision of the policy the FAA uses to qualify aviation mechanics for inspection authority (IA).
The FAA proposed modifying the definition “actively engaged” as it is used to evaluate experience of airframe and powerplant (A&P) mechanics who apply for IA certification. The FAA announced the planned revision in a notice of proposed policy Nov. 5.
Numerous members have contacted AOPA to voice their concerns since AOPA first reported the proposal.
AOPA believes that more time is needed to fully investigate the implications of the proposal, gather feedback from all those affected, and develop a meaningful response, wrote Kristine Hartzell, AOPA manager of regulatory affairs, in a Nov. 22 letter to the Department of Transportation.
“AOPA wants to ensure that any policy clarification includes inspector authorization renewals for those A&P mechanics who maintain aircraft part time or occasionally, including IAs who maintain their own aircraft, teach or supervise others in aircraft maintenance, specialize in particular aircraft type, historic or vintage aircraft, or operate in remote locations,” Hartzell said.
The current comment period is set to expire on Dec. 6.
Dan Namowitz is an aviation writer and flight instructor. He has been a pilot since 1985 and an instructor since 1990.
A new FAA policy on obstructive sleep apnea that addresses many of the concerns raised by AOPA is scheduled to take effect March 2.
AOPA and the National Business Aviation Association have jointly filed an amicus, or friend of the court, brief in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals as part of the ongoing legal battle over the future of Santa Monica Municipal Airport.
AOPA worked with the flight training industry and FAA to quickly resolve a problem that suddenly put many rating applications on hold.
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