July 2, 2013
By Jim Moore
Federal officials have yet to respond to AOPA’s demand for information (and explanations) regarding the increasingly frequent detention and search of law-abiding pilots by agents of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Customs and Border Protection—well inside the national borders.
AOPA continues to gather new reports from pilots with experiences similar to those first reported by AOPA Online in May. AOPA Manager of Aviation Security Tom Zecha said the online survey need not be fully completed to be useful, though the more data supplied, the better.
Zecha said he has heard positive feedback from members who appreciate the handy kneeboard-formatted checklist with detailed recommendations on how to respond to ground inspection and search demands (other than routine ramp checks conducted by FAA staff). The checklist will be published as a tear-out insert in the August issue of AOPA Pilot.
AOPA has yet to receive a response to a June 19 letter to acting CBP Commissioner Thomas S. Winkowski that noted the agency’s failure to respond to previous Freedom of Information requests within the time frame required by law, and gave the agency until July 20 to respond before the association pursues “other remedies.”
AOPA Online Associate Editor Jim Moore joined AOPA in 2011 and is an instrument-rated private pilot who enjoys competition aerobatics.
General Aviation Statistics,
AOPA is offering special aircraft financing for flying clubs as a way to help new flying clubs acquire quality aircraft while aiding existing clubs that want to expand their fleets.
An AOPA-backed bill would create a partial abatement of property or sales and use taxes for Nevada businesses that repair aircraft or components.
Pilots in Washington State have another voice advocating for them on airport, economic, legislative, and public perception issues: the Washington State Aviation Alliance.
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