The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association is fighting yet another attempt by the New Jersey legislature to pass a pilot background check and pilot ID law that would violate the U.S. Constitution.
New Jersey Senate Bill 1438 would require that any student pilot, or any pilot wanting to rent an aircraft in New Jersey, would have to be fingerprinted and submit to a criminal history background check. The state would issue a photo ID card to approved pilots, and FBOs and flight schools would have to check the state ID card before allowing a pilot to take an aircraft. Pilots would have to pay for the ID card, background check, and fingerprints.
"This bill is unconstitutional, unneeded, and unfair to New Jersey pilots and aviation businesses," said Andy Cebula, AOPA senior vice president of government and technical affairs. "AOPA will fight this with every means at our disposal."
The state Senate Transportation Committee will hold a hearing on the bill Monday, November 18, and AOPA will be there to testify.
AOPA also sent a letter to key members of the New Jersey Senate, opposing the bill and detailing why it would be bad law.