April 4, 2013
By AOPA ePublishing staff
A record 223 members of Congress have stepped up to mount an attack against aviation user fees. The House members sent a letter to President Barack Obama April 5 stating that user fees are the “wrong approach.”
Their support comes in advance of the Obama administration’s budget proposal, scheduled to be released April 10, which is widely anticipated to once again call for $100-per-flight user fees for certain commercial and general aviation operations.
“Rarely do we see so many members of Congress so united on an issue,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller. “The message is loud and clear—user fees are the wrong way to fund our aviation system and Congress won’t support them.”
AOPA rallied its members in early March to contact their members of Congress to tell them user fees are a bad idea and to urge them to sign a letter opposing such fees.
The letter, spearheaded by House aviation subcommittee Chairman Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.), Ranking Member Rick Larsen (D-Wash.), and GA Caucus co-chairs Sam Graves (R-Mo.) and John Barrow (D-Ga.), states that Congress has rejected repeated attempts by this and previous administrations to impose user fees. It also points out that GA is vital to the U.S. economy, providing millions of jobs, and requests that Obama abandon the idea.
“We are grateful to all the members of Congress who stepped forward to protect aviation by signing this letter. And we are especially thankful to Representatives LoBiondo, Larsen, Graves, and Barrow for their strong bipartisan leadership on this issue,” Fuller added.
Find out if your congressman or congresswoman signed the “no user fee” letter and thank him or her for standing up for GA.
A survey of flying doctors found that 80 percent favor third class medical reform.
AOPA has asked the mayor of Chesapeake City, Maryland, to reconsider a proposed ban on overflights below 400 feet agl that would impact helicopter operations.
As the push for third class medical reform continues on Capitol Hill and with the Department of Transportation and Office of Management and Budget, Senior Aviation Medical Examiner Dr. Brent Blue is expressing his support for the effort by reaching out to fellow AMEs with compelling reasons of why pilot safety won’t be affected by medical reform.
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