January 21, 2011
By AOPA ePublishing staff
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has denied a petition from Santa Monica, Calif., to review the FAA’s decision that the city could not ban certain jet traffic at Santa Monica Airport.
The FAA had stopped the city from going forward with an ordinance to ban Category C and D aircraft (such as Gulfstreams and some Citations) from operating at the airport and ruled that it had no authority for the ban. The appeals court upheld the FAA decision, finding that the action was not “arbitrary and capricious.” AOPA has long been involved in the dispute at Santa Monica and provided input as a friend of the court in the city’s appeal.
“The outcome of this case could have had tremendous negative impacts on any federally obligated airport—allowing local officials to implement restrictions on operations in spite of FAA grant assurances and federal law,” said AOPA Vice President of Airport Advocacy Bill Dunn, who attended the October 2010 hearing with AOPA legal counsel Kathy Yodice. “Instead, the court reaffirmed the FAA’s authority to safeguard airports’ role in the national air transportation system.”
Airport sponsors that accept federal money for improvements have contractual obligations to make the airport available for use on “fair and reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination, to all types, kinds, and classes of aeronautical uses”—an obligation Santa Monica would have violated with the jet ban, the court affirmed.
As the cold weather chills AOPA’s Headquarters in Frederick, many of us are inside generating new resources for flying clubs.
In my house, every Friday night is “Movie Night.” While the movies are rarely educational (I don’t think I learned anything from the Lego Movie), we look forward to the weekly opportunity to spend time together. Why not use the same concept for your Flying Club (with the addition of education, of course)?
AOPA Flying Club Manager Kelby Ferwerda posted the following on the AOPA Flying Club Facebook Page: “Recently I’ve talked with quite a few Flying Clubs about maintaining social activity through the cold winter months. Some clubs host Holliday Parties, others have Potluck Movie Nights. What does your club do to keep members involved during the chilly months?”
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