December 24, 2013
By Elizabeth A Tennyson
AOPA President Mark Baker and the heads of several other general aviation organizations are contacting key appropriations subcommittee leaders to ask for fiscal year 2014 funding to qualify and certify a safe alternative to leaded avgas.
In formal letters sent Dec. 19, the GA leaders asked the chairmen and ranking members of the House and Senate subcommittees on transportation, HUD, and related agencies to provide a minimum of $5.571 million in funding, in keeping with the administration’s request. The money, they said, will allow government and industry to begin implementing the recommendations of the FAA’s Unleaded Avgas Transition Rulemaking Committee. Those recommendations address the transition of the GA piston fleet to an unleaded fuel.
“The support of your Subcommittee now and in the future will be essential for ensuring that the transition effectively balances environmental improvement with aviation safety, technical challenges, and economic impact,” the letters said.
In addition to Baker, the letters were signed by Experimental Aircraft Association Chairman Jack Pelton, General Aviation Manufacturers Association President Pete Bunce, National Air Transportation Association President Tom Hendricks, and National Business Aviation Association President Ed Bolen.
AOPA has been heavily engaged in ensuring that the needs of the general aviation community are met as work continues to find one or more acceptable alternatives to leaded avgas. The association also serves on the Piston Aviation Fuels Initiative (PAFI), a government-industry group created to provide a path forward for the identification, evaluation, and fleetwide deployment of the most promising replacements for leaded fuel. In part, the group is charged with helping to ensure fleetwide deployment is achieved with minimal disruption to the GA industry and the greatest likelihood of marketplace success.
Director of Government Affairs and Executive Communications Elizabeth Tennyson joined AOPA in 1998, the same year she earned her private pilot certificate. She also holds an instrument rating and enjoys jumping out of planes almost as much as flying them.
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