July 12, 2013
By Dan Namowitz
For the third consecutive year, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has issued a proclamation in appreciation of general aviation’s contributions to the state’s economy and the well-being of its residents.
Hickenlooper’s proclamation declared July 2013 as General Aviation Appreciation Month in recognition GA’s “critical role in the lives of our people,” and to emphasize the significant interest the state has in “the continued vitality of General Aviation, Aerospace, aircraft manufacturing, educational institutions and aviation organizations and community airports and airport operators.”
Hickenlooper’s proclamation notes that Colorado’s general aviation airports contribute $2.1 billion to the state economy—or $479 per capita—while creating nearly 22,650 jobs with an annual payroll of nearly $750 million.
Colorado, it said, is home to 76 airports that serve 17,819 pilots and 5,483 general aviation aircraft that support state tourism, commerce, and responses to emergencies and natural disasters.
AOPA has long participated in Colorado’s efforts to maintain a strong general aviation infrastructure, working closely with the new Colorado General Aviation Alliance, the Colorado Pilots Association, the Colorado Aviation Business Association, the Colorado Airport Operators Association, and other organizations.
AOPA’s Central Southwest regional manager recently put GA’s utility to the test with a whirlwind trip covering four states, seven airports, and nine meetings.
Wisconsin’s governor has signed a bill adding aviation to an existing recreational-use statute.
Smith Field in Fort Wayne, Ind., has withstood three separate attacks—in the 1970s, 1990s, and 2002—to close it and redevelop the land. Now, it's thriving.
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